ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Navy announced on Friday that it was purchasing two multirole Type 054A frigates from China for bolstering its war-fighting capability.
The contract for the acquisition of two warships from China Shipbuilding Trading Company Ltd (CSTC) was signed at the Ministry of Defence Production.
The navy said that Pakistan’s fleet of Type054A warships would grow to four by 2021.
“The induction of these ships will substantially enhance Pakistan Navy’s war fighting capabilities while effectively contributing towards maritime security operations in the region,” the navy’s media directorate said in a press statement.
It described Type-054A as an “extremely potent and state-of-the-art warship”, which is equipped with latest weapons, including long range missiles and hi-tech sensors, capable to undertake operations in all domains of naval warfare.
The ship has a stealthy design and is primarily designed for air defence. The frigates are also equipped to conduct anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions.
According to websites on naval issues, Type 054A has a length of 134m and abeam of 16m. The standard displacement is 3,600t, while the full displacement is around 4,000t. Each vessel is estimated to cost $250 million.
Type 054A frigates also have a helipad and a hangar and can accommodate a helicopter or unmanned aerial vehicles.
“The acquisition of these modern ships is certainly a value addition in Pakistan Navy which is an ardent defender of national maritime interests of Pakistan,” the navy’s media directorate said.
With 29 vessels already commissioned in Chinese Navy, Type 054A is considered to be one of their major vessels.
Published in Dawn, June 2nd, 2018