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The Norwegian government has announced it is starting the development of the next-generation naval strike missile in co-operation with Germany with Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace as the lead industrial partner, the Norwegian company reported on 24 November 2023.

Having developed the current Naval Strike Missile (NSM), Kongsberg will take the lead role in developing the new weapon, which will complement the NSM, the Norwegian Ministry of Defence said in a statement. The new missile will be known as the SuperSonic Strike Missile (3SM) Tyrfing and is scheduled to be ready in 2035.

The Norwegian and German governments first declared that a new anti-ship missile would become a collaborative project in 2021, with the missile set to arm naval vessels in both countries. The Norwegian government is proposing to initiate and complete the initial design phase of the 3SM Tyrfing project before returning to the Norwegian Parliament to recommend the project is continued.

Development of the SuperSonic Strike Missile (3SM) Tyrfing, a successor to the NSM, is to be led by Kongsberg. (Image: Kongsberg)

“The development of Norwegian missiles is a success story. The Norwegian defence industry, with Kongsberg at the forefront, has unique expertise and produces world-class missiles,” Norwegian Defence Minister Bjørn Arild Gram was quoted as saying in a Kongsberg press release. “The project will continue to extend this strategically important expertise so we can continue to develop missiles that are attractive to other NATO countries and close allies.”

“The new strike missile project will ensure that Norway retains its position as a world leader in missile production, based on seamless co-operation between industry, governments and research establishments,” said Eirik Lie, president of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace. “The project will create new Norwegian jobs, while offering Norway and its allies improved defence capabilities.”

Today’s NSM, which has anti-ship and land attack capabilities, was developed in the early 2000s and delivered to the Norwegian armed forces from 2011 to 2015. Today, the missile has been selected by 13 countries, while an air-launched version, the Joint Strike Missile, is set to arm the F-35 Joint Strike Fighters of a number of air forces.