Philippines to Buy 5 Japanese Patrol Boats Via $415M Loan

Agreement was signed on May 17, 2024.
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  • 08:07 AM, May 20, 2024
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Philippines to Buy 5 Japanese Patrol Boats Via $415M Loan
Filipino patrol boat @PNA

The Philippines will purchase five patrol vessels from Japan through a Japanese loan worth approximately 23.9 billion pesos ($415 million) amid escalating tensions in the South China Sea, the Philippine Foreign Affairs Department announced on Friday.

The loan agreement was signed by Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo and Japanese Ambassador Endo Kazuya.

"This occasion signifies not only the deepening of bilateral relations between the Philippines and Japan, but also underscores our unwavering commitment to enhance our maritime safety capabilities for the benefit of our nation and the broader maritime community,” stated Manalo.

The strategic move to bolster naval resources comes amid rising confrontations with China over territorial claims in the South China Sea. In April, Japan, along with Australia and the United States, reaffirmed their support for the 2016 South China Sea arbitral tribunal ruling, which favored the Philippines over China and declared the award as final and legally binding.

This deal is part of a broader cooperation framework under which Japan has previously provided the Philippines with 10 patrol ships in 2013 and two larger vessels in 2016. The newly announced five patrol ships are scheduled for delivery between 2027 and 2028.

Additionally, the Philippine Coast Guard disclosed plans last December to construct a facility in Subic Bay, Luzon Island, intended for the newly procured large patrol ships.

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