at the time (late 60s/early 70s) the Irish Naval Service was a very small force with 3 Flower Class corvettes.Why did the EU shell out? Was it because the vessels were used for MPA and fishery patrol purposes?
With the Common Fisheries Policy and an increase in the waters (200 mile EEZ in 1976 which is 10% of EU waters)that we were responsible for policing and enforcing Irish and EU law of
The primary role was defence of the State (With a 40 or 76mm main gun plus secondary armament) but they spend 80+% of their time on fisheries protection (of course when they are patrol it isn’t just trawlers they are looking at. The EU didn’t pay for the armament.
the 2 CASA C235 MPAs are unarmed and were purchased as on same basis (in 1994).2 CASA C295 MPAs are on order to replace them currently. Not sure how much by the EU is also contributing to them as well.