Prime Minister (PM) Lee Hsien Loong officiated the launch ceremony of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN)’s second and third Invincible-class submarines, Impeccable and Illustrious, at thyssenkrupp Marine Techniques (tkMS) shipyard in Kiel, Germany on 13 December 2022. The submarines had been launched by Mrs Lee Hsien Loong, who, because the partner of the officiating officer, was the Girl Sponsor. German Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz attended the launch ceremony as an honoured visitor, on the invitation of PM Lee. The ceremony was additionally witnessed by Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Minister for International Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Chief of German Navy Vice-Admiral Jan Christian Kaack, RSN’s Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral Aaron Beng, CEO tkMS Oliver Burkhard, Chief Government Defence Science and Know-how Company (DSTA) Mr Mervyn Tan, and different senior defence officers from each nations.

The Invincible-class submarines, formally categorized because the Sort 218SG submarines, is a category of conventionally-powered assault submarines, ordered by the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) from German-based naval conglomerate ThyssenKrupp Marine Techniques (TKMS). The Sort 218SG is an extensively-customised by-product of the export-oriented Sort 214 submarine, with particular design traits drawn from Sort 212 submarines. The Invincible-class submarines are custom-designed for operations in Singapore’s shallow and busy tropical waters, and so they possess longer endurance and better payloads. Singapore’s Ministry of Protection (MINDEF) ordered 4 Sort 218SG submarines – two in 2013 and two in 2017, as a substitute to the RSN’s currently-serving Challenger-class and Archer-class submarines.


Mrs Lee Hsien Loong (third from left), spouse of Prime Minister (PM) Lee Hsien Loong, launching the submarines on the thyssenkrupp Marine Techniques (tKMS) shipyard in Kiel, Germany. (Picture by MINDEF Singapore)

Emphasising the significance of the submarines throughout his deal with on the ceremony, PM Lee stated, “Singapore is a maritime nation and we’re extremely reliant on the free and unimpended motion of products and companies throughout the ocean for our prosperity and certainly survival. The RSN has the essential mission of maintaining our Sea Strains of Communication open. Submarines present the RSN an added functionality to fulfil its function.” Expressing optimism for the nice and cozy and rising defence relations between Singapore and Germany, he added, “Our collaboration on this strategic functionality underscores the depth of partnership and the belief between our navies and our defence industries. I’m assured that the connection between Germany and Singapore will develop from power to power, and I sit up for extra significant interactions between our militaries.”

Following the launch, Impeccable and Illustrious, will endure a sequence of sea trials earlier than supply to Singapore. The primary submarine Invincible was launched in 2019, whereas the fourth submarine Inimitable, stays below development. The launch of the 2 submarines, regardless of the challenges posed by COVID-19, underpins the resilience and readiness of the SAF, RSN and DSTA. It marks a key milestone within the RSN’s submarine modernisation journey. The launch can be testomony to the nice and cozy and rising defence ties between Singapore and Germany, underpinned by the signing of the improved Defence Cooperation Settlement in 2018. Each nations cooperate and work together extensively by high-level visits and dialogues, army exchanges and coaching, cross-attendance {of professional} programs, and in areas of mutual curiosity, similar to in defence expertise and cyber.

Republic of Singapore Navy Officiates Launch Ceremony of Two Invincible-class Submarines
Heart first row, so as (left to proper): Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Mrs Lee, PM Lee, Chancellor Scholz, Minister for International Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan. (Picture by MINDEF Singapore)