Berlin will contribute an estimated 115 million euros for four new corvette warships for the Israeli navy report the German newspaper Bild am Sonntag. According to leaked official memos, the deal, which was struck in November with the Jewish state, will cost a total of 1 billion euros.
The deal can be finalized by the end of this year and only needs final approval by the German parliament's budget committee, government spokesman Steffen Seibert stated.
The ships, constructed by the German firm Thyssen Krupp are being built in the northern port city of Kiel according to Bild am Sonntag.
According to the leaked memos, the German Defense Ministry is required to earmark a certain amount for "defense systems for Israel," with the goal of "securing the economic region in the Mediterranean Sea."
In 2013 Israel purchased six Dolphin submarines from Germany using a steep discount, with the first three submarines being delivered as a gift.
At the beginning of May 2014 though, German’s national security adviser Christoph Heusgen told his Israeli counterpart Yossi Cohen following the breakdown in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and Germany's harsh criticism of Israel’s construction in the settlements, the Bundestag would not approve a grant of hundreds of millions of euros to subsidize the boats.
Earlier this year Israel's Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon and Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz approved plans to purchase four large missile boats and recruit the sailors to operate them, in order to ensure the Israeli navy is able to patrol and protect the new gas fields.
It was previously reported that new offshore gas resources found off of Israel's coast offers Israel's enemies a clear target that the army would have to increase spending in order to protect. "We have to build an entire new defensive envelope," said Ilan Lavi, head of the Israeli Navy's planning department.