According to the Slobodna Dalmacija news portal of Croatia, a contract was signed between Brodosplit shipbuilder and Croatian Ministry of Defence to construct four more Omis-class inshore patrol vessels for the Croatian Navy.
The first boat was delivered to Croatian Navy in December 2018, with a year delay due to the design problems.
Delay of the first ship was mostly because of the design issues. The main problem was the selection of the main engine of the ship. Though Croatian Navy requested Mercedes Maybach (former MTU) machine as the main propulsion system, the shipyard opted Caterpillar, which is both longer and heavier, so the ship had to be lengthened. This issue affected the manoeuvrability and stability issues in a negative way. Attempts were made to repair the stabilizers protruding from the edge of the ship, but in the end, it made it very difficult to berth alongside another ship.
Brodosplit officials look confident and guarantee that there will be no problem at next ships.
The vessels are planned to be delivered to the Croatian Navy between 2021 and 2023.
Criticisms of domestic specialists:
This agreement was criticised by some of the defence specialists in Croatia. Criticisms are more about whether or not lessons can be learned from the delays in the construction of the first ship. Before the first ship was built, the last naval ship was built 16 years ago by Brodosplit Shipyard. It is stated that this situation caused a loss of experience related to building a warship, therefore Omis, the first ship, was delayed by the Croatian navy.
Another issue being criticized is that the details of the agreement are not disclosed by the Croatian defense ministry. Brodosplit officials commented on this subject in an interview “As the contracting party owns all MOD documents, we must not make the results available to the public, as this agreement is classified as “Restricted” and as such we must not submit or publish it to anyone. All representatives of builders in contact with OOB documentation have undergone special security checks and are certified to protect the confidentiality of information. As far as we are concerned, publishing the test results would not do us any harm, it would only benefit us.”
Omis Class Coastal Patrol Vessel :
The Omis-class patrol boat is 43,25-meter vessel long and equipped with the Aselsan-built 30 mm SMASH remote-controlled naval gun system, two Herstal 12,7mm machine guns and Strela MANPADs. It is also equipped with a stern ramp and a rigid hull for 6 crew members with a propulsion diesel engine that allows speeds up to 40 knots and 60 NM navigation autonomy. The complement of the vessel is 16.
Omis class is planned to perform patrol, search and rescue, and EEZ protection tasks. The vessels may be used for protection of internal waters and for combat and logistic support.