China's Hudong Zhonghua shipyard lauched the third Type 054 A/P Frigate destined to serve in the Pakistan Navy, on Tuesday.
“The Launching ceremony of 3rd state-of-the-art Type-054 Class frigate constructed for Pak Navy, was held at Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard, China. The technologically advance platform is fitted with latest surface, subsurface, anti-air weapons, combat management system & sensors,” the Pakistan Navy tweeted last week.
The first-in-class frigate was launched in August of 2020 and entered sea trails in late May. The second was launched in January 2021. The keel laying for the third frigate took place on May 1st 2021.
The ship is the third of four vessels on order by Pakistan. The country signed an initial contract for the delivery two Type 054 A/P frigates in 2017. An additional contract for two more ships was announced in June 2018. In addition to these frigates from China, Pakistan will also commission new corvettes from Turkey and OPV from the Netherlands. It is also modernizing its submarine force.
The Type 054A is a multi-role frigate and is recognized as the backbone of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) fleet of surface combatants with 30 vessels in commission. They have a length of 134 meters, a beam of 16 meters for a displacement of 4,000 tons. Pak frigates will reportedly be armed with an SR2410C phased radar and 32-cell Vertical Launching System (VLS) able to launch the YJ-12 anti-ship cruise missiles.
Other armaments include eight C-803 anti-ship / land-attack cruise missiles, one PJ26 76 mm dual-purpose naval gun, two Type 730 7-barrel 30 mm CIWS guns or Type 1130, six 324mm Yu-7 ASW torpedo launchers, two Type 87 240mm anti-submarine rocket launcher (36 rockets carried) and two Type 726-4 18-tube decoy rocket launchers.
The Type 054A/P frigates are powered by four Shaanxi 16 PA6 STC diesel engines, each developing 5700 kW. The ships have a crew of 165 each and can reach a top speed of 27 knots with an estimated cruising range of 8,025 nautical miles (14,862 km)