A Minister of Defence spokesperson insisted that no final agreement had been reached
Roberto Lopes, a source within the Brazilian defence community, disclosed a sum of £84million had been agreed by Defence Minister Raul Jungmann.
Mr Lopes said: “Minas Gerais is the strongest designation at the time. Rio de Janeiro was ‘saved’ for the future aircraft carrier. However, nothing definite. Only with the execution of the acquisition is that defined.”
The UK Defence Journal also reported that Brazil has already submitted a payment plan for the ship and are optimistic about closing the deal.
The sale of the heroic vessel would leave the UK without a helicopter carrier until the arrival of the HMS Queen Elizabeth that will not run at full capacity until 2020.
A Minister of Defence spokesperson insisted that no final agreement had been reached with the South American nation.
They declared: “Discussions with Brazil over the long-planned sale of HMS Ocean are at an advanced stage, but no final decisions have been made.
“HMS Ocean has served admirably with us since 1998 and the revenue she generates will be reinvested in defence as we bolster our Royal Navy with two types of brand new frigates and two huge aircraft carriers.”
Shadow Secretary of State for Defence Nia Griffith skewered the Government for the move, if it comes to fruition.
She tweeted: “Hugely disappointing if this turns out to be true, HMS Ocean undergoes a refit, then sold for just £84million.
“Government have refused to engage on issue of amphibious capability for months, Tories talk a good game but they’re consistently hollowing out our defence capabilities.”
Despite the lambasting, Government sources insisted that the £84million price tag of the hailed ship was a good deal.
One said: “This is £84million into the defence budget that we didn’t have before.”
The HMS Ocean cost a whopping £150million when it entered service in the 1990s.
The illustrious vessel received a £65million refit in 2014 – only £15million short of the reported selling price.
The UK Defence Journal also reported that Brazil has already submitted a payment plan for the ship
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) recently confirmed the vessel’s successor, the £3.1billion HMS Queen Elizabeth, was leaking as divers were sent in to perform immediate repairs.
The aircraft carrier was leaking due to a faulty shaft seal, according to military officials, and it was thought that some 200 litres of water poured into the ship every hour.
When the Queen commissioned the incoming behemoth, she said it embodied the “best of British technology and innovation”.
The HMS Queen Elizabeth will not run at full capacity until 2020
She went on: “We are gathered here in Portsmouth today just a short distance from HMS Victory, a flagship of our seafaring past and a reminder of the debt we owe to the Royal Navy which for more than 500 years has protected the people of this country and our interests around the world.
“Like HMS Victory, HMS Queen Elizabeth embodies the best of British technology and innovation, a true flagship for the 21st century.
“The most powerful and capable ship ever to raise the white ensign, she will in the years and decades ahead represent the country’s resolve on the global stage.”