April 21 (UPI) -- Britain's Ministry of Defense awarded MBDA Systems $698 million in contracts for missile deliveries, the government announced on Friday.
The agreement includes three separate missile deliveries, including the Common Anti-air Modular Missile, the Meteor, and the Sea Viper. U.K. defense officials say the contracts aim to keep developing Queen Elizabeth-class carriers safer once they are put in service.
The Queen Elizabeth class refers to two carriers currently under construction for the U.K. Royal Navy. Once completed, the next-generation warships will carry the newly procured Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II jets for combat operations.
"This substantial investment in missile systems is vital in protecting our ships and planes from the most complex global threats as our armed forces keep the U.K. safe," the U.K.'s Secretary of State for Defense Michael Fallon said in a press release. "These contracts will sustain high skilled jobs across the UK and demonstrate that strong defense and a strong economy go hand in hand."
Britain has set aside $52 million for the Meteor missiles, $223 million for anti-air Sea Viper systems and $413 million for Common Anti-air Modular Missiles, or CAMM. The latter will be integrated with Type 26 frigates for enhanced air defense.