China and Pakistan marked their 70 years of relations with the launch of a Type 054A/P warship in Shanghai on Friday.
This is the second warship that China has launched for Pakistan. A statement from the Pakistan Navy underlined that the launch occasion coincided with the 70 years of Pakistan-China relations.
A deal for four warships was signed between the two countries in 2017 to enhance Pakistan’s maritime defense and deterrence capabilities. Type 054A/P frigates are equipped with modern surface, subsurface, and anti-air weapons, sensors, and combat management systems.
Pakistan Navy chief Admiral Amjad Khan Niazi told the Chinese state-affiliated Global Times that these ships will boost the potency of Pakistan’s “fleet and significantly contribute in maintaining peace and security in the region”.
The frigate constructed by China Shipbuilding Trading Company and Huodong-Zhonghua Shipyard was launched at Hudong-Zhonghua Shipyard. The first ship was launched in August 2020. All four units are to be built in China and delivered by 2021.
New Radar Configuration
Reports suggest there are two radar systems on the ship. Naval News has confirmed that it has an SR2410C radar system and a 3D multifunction electronically scanned array (ESA) radar, which has an air range of over 250km and can track 150 surface and air targets simultaneously.
Pakistan Navy's 054A/P frigate is likely to be equipped with SR2410C phased array radar and the export version YJ-12 supersonic AShM CM302. CGI by 西葛西 pic.twitter.com/zyVzC6aaHW
— dafeng cao (@dafengcao) December 23, 2018
The SR2410C has also been installed in the Bangladesh Navy’s C13B corvette, built by China. It is believed to be the equivalent of Smart-S Mk2 by Thales. The radar is known for its 250km coverage that applies the unique multi-beam concept.
The Type 054A/P is a multi-role frigate, equipped with a H/PJ-26 76mm main gun and eight C803 anti-ship missiles. It can launch surface-to-air missiles and triple torpedo launchers. Described as the backbone of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), the ships will be the most advanced platforms of the Pakistan Navy.
The state-of-the-art frigates are part of Pakistan’s exercise to renew its fleet with the procurement of several modern platforms. Pakistan will also commission new corvettes from Turkey along with modernizing its submarines.