The United State Navy has unveiled a 30-year shipbuilding plan for 82 new ships by 2026 at a cost of $147 billion, a significant increase over previous plans that will surely irritate both Russia and China.
The 23-page “Report to Congress on the Annual Long-Range Plan for Construction of Naval Vessels,” released on Friday, calls for construction of three new attack submarines, four large unmanned surface vessels, designation of a second shipbuilder for frigates and retirement of most of the Navy’s current cruiser fleet.
It also refers to development of light amphibious warships and next-generation logistics programs.
The announced plans differ from previous Navy projections, which in part include an increase of 44 ships between Fiscal Years 2021 and 2026 at a cost of $102 billion.
The ambitious plan, based on a classified study presented to Congress earlier in December, was released on Friday and will likely initiate a battle in Congress between the Navy and other US service branches over funding.
“The plan calls for a larger fleet of both manned and unmanned vessels prepared to face greater challenges on, above or under the sea, by accelerating submarine construction, modernizing aircraft, extending the service life of cruisers and increasing the number of destroyers,” David L. Norquist, deputy secretary of defense, said in a Pentagon press release. SOVEREIGNPH