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Navy orders €98m ships

THE Naval Service hopes to have the first of two €98m hi-tech patrol vessels operational within two years.

The navy is due to receive the first of its two new vessels -- currently being built at a British shipyard -- in 2014.

The Government has confirmed an order for two vessels, which are slightly larger than the existing LE Niamh/Roisin class, though they have not taken up an option for a third vessel with builders Babcock Marine.