A new Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report says that the cost of the U.S. Navy’s future fleet of 10 FFG(X) frigates could total $12.3 billion or $1.2 billion per ship in 2020. That amount represents a 40 percent increase from the service branch’s estimate of $8.7 billion or $870 million per ship.
According to the report, the total direct cost of operations and sustainment for 20 FFG(X) vessels could reach $40 billion throughout the 2026 to 2060 period. The Navy previously selected Fincantieri Marinette Marine to build the next-generation frigates, which are slated for delivery until 2025.
CBO predicts that the subsequent ships would cost $1.1 billion each or $10.9 billion in total if Fincantieri remains as the FFG(X) contractor.
FFG(X) would also be the Navy’s least expensive surface combatant program over the past half-century if the service’s estimates turn out accurate, the report states.
CBO noted that it studied other surface combatant programs to establish cost estimates for procurement as well as operations and support for the frigate throughout its 25-year service life.