European collaboration

A European collaboration enables the sharing of costs of the design, development, production, and maintenance and upgrade – so the whole lifecycle. This saves money and time, while improving the quality of the submarine.

Thanks to our footprint in the market, we have formed international alliances. For example, in 2017 Norway and Germany entered into a joint venture to build six new HDW class 212CD submarines, a new version of the HDW class 212A, aimed at worldwide deployment. The further development of this project is an important incentive to deepen and broaden European collaboration in the field of defense.

Read more below about the benefits of a European collaboration.

Advantages a European collaboration

Benefits for the Netherlands

The Netherlands will benefit greatly from a European collaboration. Advantages include cost reductions, integrated logistics support, training, crew exchange and a submarine command course.

It also provides a lot of employment and knowledge for the Den Helder region. Approximately 500 direct and 1,500 indirect jobs will be available for a period of at least 30 years. We will play an active role in educating and training all the necessary personnel and ensure that we transfer the expertise of submarine production to members of the Royal Netherlands Navy, as well as Dutch companies and knowledge institutions.

The Dutch government recently stated that more European collaboration in the field of defense is not only necessary, but also feasible.

Not starting over

Thanks to cooperation with Norway and Germany, it is not necessary to start develop submarines from scratch. There are significant scale benefits to consider, however, technical specifications will be tailored to meet the needs of Dutch submarines. By creating a "European Family of Submarines", the economies of scale can be spread across multiple countries, thereby benefiting all participates, including Netherlands.

Centralised production

The development, supply of spare parts, crew training and maintenance can all be done together in one place. This saves a lot of naval shipbuilding costs, because a portion of the shipbuilding infrastructure can be reused for sustainment.

It's also possible to combine maintenance of the current Walrus class submarines with the completion and maintenance of the new Dutch submarines. Additionally we would be able to maintain our other HDW-class submarines at the naval port in Den Helder to ensure productivity in the region for a longer period of time.


The existing relationship between Germany and the Netherlands is strong, also at a military level. Submarine collaboration would further strengthen this relationship. In addition, we currently have good existing relations with Dutch companies, including knowledge institutes such as TNO and Marin.


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