AUSN Releases Blueprint for Achieving a 355-Fleet Navy

Updated: May 11

Rebuilding America’s Navy requires a strategy that educates and inspires, expands shipbuilding capacity and gives Sailors greater career flexibility

The Association of the United States Navy today released a policy paper that identifies several factors that have prevented the Navy from building a fleet of 355 ships, the goal mandated by federal law since 2017.

Today’s fleet is just under 300 ships, and while supporters of a strong Navy often call for higher numbers, AUSN believes several coordinated steps need to be taken before that can happen – including educating and inspiring students, supporting vocational education and commercial shipbuilding, expanding our view of how Navy ships contribute to diplomacy, and increasing the incentive for Sailors to stay in the Navy.

“We believe America supports a strong Navy, one that rivals the fleet that deterred Russia during the Cold War,” said AUSN Executive Director Jason Beardsley. “But we simply can't pull down a lever and have more ships appear. America must rethink its economic policies to support a larger fleet, and raise an educated and inspired new generation of Sailors to man these ships.”

“We hope this paper helps identify the hurdles to reaching these goals so that we can act together to achieve them,” Beardsley said.

AUSN Shipbuilding Strategy, May 2021
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