In days of yore a fair percentage of our ships were nicked/copied/borrowed without long term leases etc from the French; just look at how many french names crop up.
They seem to have done us pretty good service and at least that country still has a significant shipbuilding industry eg QM2.
Aren't a great deal of the UK's military aircraft sourced abroad? In which case I can't see it will make any difference to do the same with ships.
I think it is a pity but the world changes.
It is really sad but I reckon you are not too far from the truth.
The French have been looking around for a building partner as the article says.
I wouldn't be surprised if other EU navies are also making enquiries.
An EU shipbuilding consortium a la Airbus perhaps.
As much as I 'ate the bloody French, I think this is a good idea. It makes the whole programme just that little bit more secure since by taking their "buy in" cash, we're obligated to finish the job and as it's already been put 60% of three hulls is more or less the same as 100% of two.
As for the bit in the paper about French Captains skippering our ships - just scare-mongering. If politicans had to stick to the truth they would have bugger all to say.
So. The French are to have a share in building the carriers.
Okay. I am assuming I am addressing the silent stratospheric minority that I would assume browse these pages now and again in terror that the swinish multitude is getting restless. Yes, you lot. Here comes a question from the lower orders, and instead of deafening silence, I'd like to hear it from someone pretty near the top, and pretty attached to procurement, please. Please use laymans terms as well, because not all of us are destined for board positions with Thales, et al.
We shake hands with France, a known NATO nay-sayer, to build possibly the most audacious project the defence sector has seen. IN the past they have been kown to pretty much 'go their own way' with regard defence, building their own carrier strike capability and their own nuclear deterrent. They even blew up the Rainbow Warrior and gave everyone a redoubtable 'pah!' when we said it was mal de merde.
Now, I need someone to assure me that the bits the French build, will have codified, acquirable spares and support made available. I think we all need to be pretty sure that of that 40%, the equipment procured therein is going to be available for a very long time, and certainly built both in Britain and France. Can one imagine the scenario if say, the aircraft lifts were built over the channel, and by sheer dint of unpredicatble French political whimsy, we ended up with a fierce anti-European in the seat in France? Can't happen?
Levers, at the end of the day it is a British design and even if what you said were true and they held us to ransom over their 40%, we could do the same with our 60%!
The crazy thing is that it would probably be cheaper to go for a proper catapult launched CVF:
a) STOVL version of JSF 50% more expensive than US Navy one, and not as good.
b) Paying for 2 designs instead of one.
Remember that the RN wanted the USN version of the JSF, the RAF wanted the the STOVL one. We went with the STOVL version. Now I hear that the RAF want to buy some USN versions for their Tornado replacement... so the RAF will have the version the RN wants and the RN the version the RAF initially wanted.
We should build catapult version CVF.
We should buy US Navy version JSF.
We should bin the STOVL side of things, after all, now we have Apache is Harrier VSTOVL still essential?