China launches 2nd warship for Pakistan Navy

China launches 2nd warship for Pakistan Navy
This file photo shows the Type-054 Class Frigate that China launched for Pakistan in Aug 2020.

China has launched a second advanced warship for Pakistan, the Pakistan Navy said in a statement on Saturday.

The warship — a Type-054 Class Frigate — is China’s most advanced frigate, according to a report by state-backed Chinese publication, Global Times.

The new version has a “better defense capability and is equipped with an improved radar system and a larger amount of missiles with a longer range”, the report quoted Zhang Junshe, a senior research fellow at the PLA Naval Military Studies Research Institute, as saying.

“Type 054A frigate also has world-class stealth capability,” the expert said.

The launching ceremony was held at the Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard in China’s Shanghai on Saturday and was attended by Chief Naval Overseer (China) Commodore Azfar Humayun and senior Chinese officials, according to a statement from the Pakistan Navy.

Addressing the ceremony, Commodore Humayun said the addition of the new warships to the Pakistan Navy’s fleet would “significantly enhance Pakistan’s maritime defense and deterrence capabilities”.

The senior navy official “acknowledged the commitment, hard work and timely completion of this important milestone project by M/s CSTC and HZ Shipyard, Shanghai despite ongoing global pandemic”, the statement added.

The statement said the warships will be “one of the most technologically advanced surface platforms of Pakistan Navy’s fleet, fitted with the latest surface, subsurface and anti-air weapon systems”.

They will also be fitted with a “range of electronic warfare, air and surface surveillance and acoustic sensors integrated through a state of the art Combat Management System”.

The launching ceremony for the first frigate was held in August of last year.

In June 2019, Pakistan Navy had announced that it was purchasing two multirole Type 054A frigates from China for bolstering its war-fighting capability. China started building the first ship in Jan 2020 under a defense agreement between both countries.

The navy had said Pakistan’s fleet of Type054A warships would grow to four by 2021.

The PLA Navy has about 30 of the Type 054A ships, each of which has a loaded displacement of 4,000 metric tonnes and is equipped with advanced radars and missiles.

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