Athens October 21, 2014 - In the presence of the President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias and the Minister of National Defence Dimitris Avramopoulos, took place the launching ceremony of the modernised submarine “OKEANOS” of the Hellenic Navy.
The ceremony took place at the premises of the Hellenic Shipyards S.A in Skaramangas and was officiated by his beatitude Metropolitan of Nikaia Mr. Alexios.
The ceremony was also attended by the Vice President of the Hellenic Parliament Ioannis Tragakis, the Alternate Minister of National Defence Fofi Gennimata, the Chief of HNDGS General Michail Kostarakos, the Chief of HNGS Vice Admiral Evangelos Apostolakis HN, the Chief of the HAFGS Lieutenant General (AF) Evangelos Tournas and the Chief of HAGS Lieutenant General Christos Manolas.
It was also attended by the Minister of Shipping and the Aegean Miltiadis Varvitsiotis, MPs, representatives of parties, representatives of local authorities, personalities of the shipbuilding industry, foreign Defence Attaches and employees of the Hellenic Shipyards.
After the end of the ceremony, Mr. Avramopoulos addressed the following statement:
“Your Excellency mister President of the Hellenic Republic, Within few days, we have once more the joy of integrating to our navy the submarine “OKEANOS”, the second submarine that come from Greek shipyards so as to enhance our country’s deterrence capability.
As it was said earlier, the two remaining submarines will follow. The overall programme will be completed within the anticipated time schedule, maybe even sooner.
The completion of this work shows, in the most emphatic way, what we can achieve even during the most difficult times, when we work with responsibility, sobriety, devotion and team spirit.
It shows the possibilities of Greek productive structure and especially our ship repairing and shipbuilding industry.
It shows the course we should follow especially now, when the country’s productive reform and the foundation of a viable growth model are a national priority.
With the delivery of the second submarine today, the exceptional efficiency and know-how of the men in our Navy who assumed the task is being proved.
I would like to express once more my satisfaction to the chief and the men of our Navy, since today they make us very proud.
I would also like to express my satisfaction and my thanks to the workers of the Hellenic Shipyards for their continuous and efficient contribution to our effort to enhance the Hellenic Fleet’s potential.
As I go through my last days as Minister of National Defence, I would like to ensure you, without rehashing clichés, that the Greek Armed Forces are a source of pride for this country.
As far as the building of missile torpedo boats in the shipyards of Elefsis, a great effort has been made by our Ministry and the Hellenic Navy as well.
Soon, very soon, these vessels will also be included to the Hellenic Navy’s operational force, the first of which will be “RITSOS” and is ready to hit the waters in the near future.
Your Excellency mister President, I would like to declare before you that today I feel a unique contentment.
And this is because, with the policy we applied at the Ministry of National Defence, I leave the Armed Forces, and the Hellenic Navy in particular, enforced with very modern submarines; something that inspires all us who know the real circumstances and the conditions under which we acted, but also all Greeks, with a feeling of security and national pride. Thank you.”