The government has awarded a £1.3bn submarine contract to Barrow shipyard.
Procurement minister Philip Dunne is at the BAE Systems site in Barrow today to make the announcement regarding the fifth Astute-class submarine, to be called Anson.
The contract covers the design and remaining build, test and commissioning activities on Anson. Manufacturing began in 2010 and Anson is scheduled to leave for sea trials in 2020.
Mr Dunne said: "This £1.3bn contract marks an important step in the progress of the Astute programme. This is a key part of our £166bn plan to ensure that our armed forces have the equipment they need to defend the UK’s interests across the seas, in the skies and on land, both at home and abroad.
"This new contract for Anson not only provides significant financial savings of £50m to the taxpayer but also secures thousands of jobs in Barrow and across the UK supply chain, demonstrating the government’s commitment to increase defence spending each year for the rest of the decade."
The sixth boat Agamemnon and the yet-to-be-named seventh – are also in various stages of construction at the shipyard.
Tony Johns, managing director of BAE Systems Submarines, said: "Signing this contract is an important milestone in the Astute programme.
"This is a hugely complex national endeavour and we are proud of the role we play in helping to protect our nation's interests.
"HMS Astute and HMS Ambush are already demonstrating their world-class capabilities with the Royal Navy, whilst the third submarine in the class, Artful, is continuing with her sea trials. The build phase for the fourth, Audacious, is also well advanced, so we continue to make positive progress across the programme."
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