The building contract for four Gowind 2500 corvettes was signed in July 2014. It was signed by the Egyptian Navy and French naval building company Naval Group (then known as DCNS) for approximately 1 billion euros without missile weaponry. According to the contract, the lead ship was constructed entirely at DCNS’s shipyard in Lorian. The other three ships in the series are to be finished at the Egyptian Alexandria Shipyard with Naval Group’s involvement. They are due in 2018-2019. The contract also includes an option for two more ships which are to be constructed in Lorian if the option is exercised. However, there is no confirmation whether the option has been exercised yet.
The beginning of construction ceremony on the lead ship EL FATEH was conducted on April 15, 2015, keel laying was conducted on September 30, 2015, the ship was launched on September 17, 2016 and the sea trials started on March 13, 2017.
In turn, on April 16, 2016 keel laying was conducted for the second Corvette (and the first that’s being constructed in Egypt) at Alexandria Shipyard in Egypt, although as of now the shipbuilding is being slowed down.
The Gowind 2500 corvette is quite large for her class, with displacement of 2600 tonnes, length of 102 m. (~334 ft.), and width of 16 m. (~52,5). She uses a 10 MW diesel-electric powertrain that consists of two diesel engines and two electric motors. Her maximum speed is 25 knots, and her range is 3700 nautical miles at 15 knots.
While regular crew is 65, the corvette can accommodate 15 more people (for example, a helicopter detachment or a special forces unit that can use the two 6,5 m. (~21 ft.) lifeboats)
The Armaments consist of two MBDA Exocet MM40 Block 3 anti-ship missile systems, 16 MBDA VL MICA vertical launch anti-air systems, a Leonardo (Oto Melara) Super Rapid 76mm naval artillery gun, two remote controlled Nexter Narwhal 20mm guns, two three tube MU90 324mm torpedo. The hangar can accommodate up to a 10 tonne class helicopter (Egyptian Navy will probably use a Kaman SH-2G Super Seasprite). Radio-electronic equipment consists of a SETIS combat system (much like the one used on FREMM frigates), a PSIM mast with a Tales SMART-S Mk 2 radar system, a Thales Vigile 200 electronic warfare system and Lacroix Sylen Mk2 electronic countermeasure. Anti-submarine warfare equipment consists of a hull-mounted sonar Thales Kingklip and a variable depth sonar Thales Captas 2.
Egypt is the second country to order a Gowind corvette after Malaysian Navy signed a contract with Naval Group (DCNS) for six corvettes for $2.8 billion. Malaysian ships are constructed at a Malaysian Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation Berhad (BHIC) Lumut Shipyard with Naval Group’s involvement. Malaysian lead ship Maharaja Lela was started there at the end of 2014, and was launched on August 24, 2017. She is expected to start active duty in April of 2019.
Also worth mentioning, on September 22, 2017 South Korea officially offered PCC 763 Jinju (class Pohang) corvette to Egyptian Navy as a gift. She received a new name — Shabab Misr.
Both corvettes (Series Gowind 2500 EL FATEH and South Korean Shabab Misr) are expected to arrive in Egypt on 21st of October — Egyptian Navy’s anniversary — and then be inducted into the navy.