The Thai House committee on national security has decided to investigate the navy's decision to accept a frigate in place of a submarine it had ordered from a Chinese shipbuilder.
The decision to switch the order from a submarine to a frigate was made after Germany refused to allow the submarine to be fitted with an engine made by a German manufacturer., MTU.
While Beijing offered to equip the submarine with a Chinese-made, CHD620 engine, certified by German MTU, Thailand rejected it stating that the engine was unproven.
Bangkok Post quoted Thai house committee chairman Rangsiman Rome of the opposition Move Forward Party that a probe will be launched into the decision to accept the frigate which costs more than the submarine- it costs 17 billion baht- one million baht more than the submarine.
After the submarine impasse, the Thai Navy proposed to substitute it will a frigate with anti-submarine capabilities.
Defene Minister Sutin Klungsang choose the frigate option saying that a new frigate would bring the navy closer to its target of having at least eight frigates to defend Thailand’s maritime territory.
Lawmaker Rome said the navy cannot say it desperately needs a submarine one day and then suddenly decide it does not want it.
If the navy is looking for a frigate, it should call for tenders from manufacturers in other countries and then select the best.