Austal delivers new Guardian-class patrol boat to Australia

Shipbuilder Austal Australia has delivered the 18th Guardian-class patrol boat (GCPB) to the Australian Department of Defence.


The vessel Nafanua III was accepted by representatives from the Australian Department of Defence. The Australian Government then gifted the vessel to the Samoa Police Service. A handover ceremony was held at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia today (November 22, 2023).

Austal Limited Chief Executive Officer Paddy Gregg said Nafanua III is the third Guardian-class patrol boat delivered by Austal in 2023, and one of five vessels in total delivered by the company’s Western Australian shipyards this calendar year.

“The Austal team has yet again shown how capable, productive and efficient they are with the delivery of this latest Guardian-class Patrol Boat. Nafanua III is the third Guardian we’ve delivered in 2023, in addition to two 58 metre Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boats to the Royal Australian Navy.”

“Since November 2018 Austal Australia has delivered a total of 29 ships – 18 x Guardian’s, 6 x Evolved Capes, 2 x Capes and 3 x large highspeed ferries. That’s an impressive track record of shipbuilding, of which all stakeholders can be proud,” Gregg added.

The GCBPs are faster than the previous/current Pacific-class patrol boats, with improved seakeeping, better amenities, and an enhanced mission capability, including an integrated RHIB stern launch and recovery system.

The 39.5 metre steel monohull patrol boat – designed, constructed and sustained by Austal Australia – is based on a design platform that has included the 38 metre Bay-class, 56 metre Armidale-class and 58 metre Cape-class patrol boats that are in service with the Australian Border Force and Royal Australian Navy.

The Pacific Patrol Boat Replacement Project was awarded to Austal Australia in May 2016, with subsequent, contract options awarded in April 2018 and November 2022.

Papua New Guinea, Fiji, the Federated States of Micronesia, Tonga, Solomon Islands, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Palau, Samoa, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, and Timor-Leste are receiving vessels.