The U.S. Navy is awarding a contract for the construction of a large surface combat ship as part of a plan to complete a 355-ship fleet, National Defense Magazine reported Tuesday.
Rear Adm. Ronald Boxall, the Navy's director of surface warfare, said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson has proposed the contract be awarded in fiscal year 2023. At the Surface Navy Association's annual conference, Boxall revealed he's unsure about the probability of reaching Richardson's goal, but the service branch has also been "aggressively" on schedule.
The future large ship would possess a commonality-oriented, integrated combat system as part of a new generation of combatant vessels. The plan comes as the Department of Defense addresses competitor adversaries including China and Russia, the report noted.