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Vosper Thornycroft (VSP)

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Tuesday 10 July, 2001

Vosper Thornycroft

Re Contract

Vosper Thornycroft Holdings PLC
10 July 2001


     10th July, 2001


                       Vosper Thornycroft Holdings plc

                    Shipbuilding Campaign Hailed a Success


Vosper Thornycroft Holdings plc ('VT') today welcomed the announcement by the
Secretary of State for Defence on the Royal Navy's Type 45 destroyer as a
successful outcome to the Campaign for South Coast Shipbuilding.

Under the agreement with the Prime Contractor, BAE Systems, the revised
strategy means that VT will play a significant role in the whole Type 45
programme by building sections for all ships in the Class.

The initial batch of six means that VT now has a stable workload that will
safeguard the jobs of 650 employees from its shipbuilding division well into
the current decade. The long-term commitment by the Ministry of Defence also
enables VT to proceed with its plans to invest in a new shipbuilding facility
within Portsmouth Naval Base.

It is envisaged that a contractual commitment will be signed with the Prime
Contractor by September. Work will then start on building the new facilities
by the end of this year and will be completed in time for steel to be cut on
the first Type 45 destroyer in early 2003.

Chief Executive, Martin Jay commented: 'Although we will not be assembling the
second destroyer as originally announced this revised procurement policy
provides us with longer-term security and is another move to alleviating the
peaks and troughs that are traditional problems in shipbuilding.

'It also means that VT, with the new facilities, will be in a strong position
to compete for future Royal Navy warship programmes such as the Future Surface
Combatant.

'The Campaign has helped us to convince the decision-makers that the
unsolicited bid by BAE Systems Marine should not be accepted and that VT is a
vital element in future competition in UK warship building. We are grateful to
SEEDA, Southampton and Portsmouth City Councils and the trade unions for their
efforts.'

VT's role in design, construction and outfitting the new destroyers will also
enhance its reputation in overseas markets where the status as a leading
supplier to the Royal Navy has been an important factor in VT securing
significant export orders.

Mr Jay added: 'Our involvement in the Type 45 destroyer programme and the move
to new, more efficient facilities at Portsmouth will provide us with an
excellent platform to provide future employment growth through winning export
orders, based on our experience as a leading designer, builder and integrator
of advanced warships'



Enquiries

Vosper Thornycroft Holdings plc

Chris Cundy

Finance Director

023 8042 6000




                                                        

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