Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy, Vice Admiral Jayanath Colombage ceremonially handed over 2 Inshore Patrol Craft (IPCs) constructed by the Navy to the Sri Lanka Coast Guard at the Port of Colombo on 10th December 2013.
Director General of the Sri Lanka Coast Guard, Rear Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne, Commander of the Western Naval Area, Rear Admiral Sirimevan Ranasinghe and senior officers of the Sri Lanka Navy and the Sri Lanka Coast Guard were present on the occasion.
Speaking at the hand-over ceremony, the Commander of the Navy said that it was another milestone day for the Sri Lanka Navy and the Sri Lanka Coast Guard. The Navy Commander went on to add that SLN’s boat building capability has reached its zenith, matching the international standards and as a result, many foreign countries have expressed interest in acquiring them. Speaking further, the Commander stated that he is very happy to see the progress the Sri Lanka Coast Guard is making in many endeavours, ranging from saving life at sea to prevention of maritime pollution. He stated that the SLCG will have an important role to play towards “Blue Economy”, the exploitation of ocean-based resources for the betterment of the country where the country’s future lies.
The two new IPCs, now sailing under the Pennant Numbers CG 19 and CG 22, will augment the operational capability of the Sri Lanka Coast Guard and allow it to increase its fleet requirements at a low cost saving a substantial amount of foreign exchange to the country.
The craft, which are the 7th and 8th craft built by the Navy for the SLCG, were constructed at SLNS Mahasen in Welisara under the SLN’s Inshore Patrol Craft Construction Project at an approximate cost of 24.4 million rupees each. The new IPCs meet the local requirements since they are custom-built as per the specifications of the operator, Sri Lanka Coast Guard, using indigenous expertise and raw material. Each craft is 14.85m in length and 3.39 m in width. They each have a displacement of 9.5 tons and are fitted with two engines of 350 HP. The hull of the craft is made of fiber glass giving extra safety. The craft is equipped with a modern Radar System, a GPS system and an electronic compass.
Press Release, December 11, 2013; Image: Sri Lanka Navy