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Launch of First Navy Offshore Patrol Vessel

New Zealand Defence Force

Te Ope Kaatua O Aotearoa

Media Advisory

Tuesday 8 November, 2006

Launch of First Navy Offshore Patrol Vessel

The first of the Royal New Zealand Navy’s new Offshore Patrol Vessels will be launched by Lady Sponsor, Dame Silvia Cartwright on Saturday 18 November, 2006.

The ship, to be commissioned into the Navy as HMNZS OTAGO, will be launched at the Tenix shipyard, Williamstown, Australia at 11.20am, to correspond to the most appropriate tides. The Minister of Defence, Phil Goff, will also be attending the launch.

OTAGO is one of two 85m long Offshore Patrol Vessels that the Navy has acquired under Project Protector. “The ships provide an enhanced capability and capacity to the Navy in a variety of roles,” said Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Ledson.

“They provide to the Defence Force, a Navy with greater versatility and enable us to work more effectively with a range of other Government agencies within our EEZ, and throughout the South Pacific beyond. Importantly, too, they will give us an increased presence around New Zealand and so will make it possible for more New Zealanders to see the Navy making its contribution to the country’s prosperity and security”.

OTAGO will be affiliated to the Otago and Southland regions, incorporating the ports of Dunedin, Invercargill, and Bluff.

ENDS

http://www.navy.mil.nz/visit-the-fleet/project-protector/default.htm

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