Minister of Defense Inaugurates Warnow Naval Arsenal
On January 11, Christine Lambrecht officially and ceremoniously took over the naval shipyard site in Rostock-Warnemünde for the German Armed Forces. The defense minister conducted the short ceremony together with Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania’s Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig and Equipment Office President Gabriele Korb.
“The navy is sewn on edge. And there is a backlog when it comes to repairs,” Lambrecht stated at the beginning of her speech. “But together we rolled up our sleeves and put an end to this shortage economy.”
The new maintenance base on the Baltic coast will in future significantly relieve the main site of the naval arsenal in Wilhelmshaven. In particular, the ships and boats of Task Flotilla 1, which is responsible for the region, no longer have to head for the North Sea port for maintenance and repairs. In the medium term, this will significantly increase the operational readiness of all ships in the fleet.
“We are making our Navy – like the entire Bundeswehr – what it needs to be again: fully operational, efficient and capable of powerfully defending our country and our alliance at any time , ” said the minister.
The purchase of the shipyard offers several advantages for Lambrecht: The Bundeswehr gains new capacities for the overburdened naval arsenal. This will make the arsenal more resilient. The takeover of the shipyard by the federal government or the Bundeswehr shows quick and purposeful action at the turning point.
The Bundeswehr will also get several hundred jobs in the shipyard that has been taken over. In this way, she gains highly qualified personnel from the company’s existing workforce. BAAINBw Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use of the German Armed Forces-President Korb added that the takeover of the shipyard was an important step for the maritime economy in the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania region.
“I’ve already heard what great spirit and drive the new colleagues bring with them,” Lambrecht welcomed the almost 500 new employees of the naval arsenal. “We’re glad you’re with us! We can certainly learn a lot from your fresh energy and your experienced eye. And I can assure you: The Bundeswehr is a good, reliable and stable employer. Your valuable work is very much needed and appreciated here.”
In mid-2022, the federal government acquired the industrial site of the former MV shipyards for 87 million euros via the Federal Agency for Real Estate Tasks. “It’s not often that a defense minister is responsible for the purchase of a shipyard,” Lambrecht recalled. “It was a very special moment when we sat together in the ministry for the first time and discussed this idea. The advantages were obvious very quickly.”
“We are strengthening the operational readiness of the Navy,” said BAAINBw Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use of the German Armed Forces-President Korb, “because repairing the ships with one’s own staff can be planned better, is significantly faster and is proven to be more economical than outsourcing to private shipyards.”
Since the signing of the contract, the construction of the new naval arsenal facility has been underway. At the time of the ceremony, the fleet service boat “Alster” and the residential and office ship “Gnurrhahn” were already in the new Bundeswehr shipyard for maintenance work.
The Naval Arsenal, or MArs for shortnaval arsenal, belongs to the Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use of the Federal Armed Forces ( BAAINBwFederal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use of the German Armed Forces). It is responsible for the operational readiness of the Navy. In addition to the technology of the ships and boats in the fleet, this also includes the land systems and land-based facilities, such as radio transmission stations, ammunition depots and naval schools.