MSC Contract Signature Ceremony 800x500

Maritime Sustainment Capability

Replacement of HMNZS Endeavour with a ship that will maintain an afloat replenishment capacity for the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF). It will be able to sustain maritime, air and land forces with fuel, fresh water, ammunition and a modest amount of equipment and non-perishable stores.

The ship at the core of the maritime sustainability capability project will be able to conduct and sustain operations within New Zealand’s maritime zone and the South Pacific, either on its own or as a partner within a wider inter-agency or multinational setting.

Endeavour’s end of life is an opportunity to incorporate ice-strengthening and winterisation features to the new ship to support New Zealand’s continued civilian presence in Antarctica through a contribution to the Joint Logistics Pool. It will be able to deliver specialised Antarctic fuel, and transport containerised scientific material and supplies to McMurdo Sound.

The Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) has announced that the name of the ship will be HMNZS Aotearoa following commissioning.

Government approval

July 2016
Project budget of $493 million is approved for the purchase and introduction into service of the maritime sustainment capability ship.


Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), South Korea – prime contractor for the design build and acceptance of a maritime sustainment vessel and its associated support package, signed 25 July 2016.

Opportunities for industry

As part of the tender process for the replacement tanker, prime contractors were encouraged to look at ways to engage with local industry. The New Zealand customisation of the replacement tanker (including military sensors and communications equipment) will be undertaken in New Zealand using local defence industry, following the ship’s delivery from HHI.

Current status

The project is in the acquisition phase with the Ministry of Defence.

 Read the media release: New naval tanker to have enhanced capabilities(external link).

 ontact: Jon Finderup, Director Maritime Domain