China’s Hudong Zhonghua shipyard hosted a steel-cutting ceremony on December 20 to mark the official start of construction of the second Pakistan Navy Type 054A frigate.
Hudong Zhonghua is a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corporation with which the Pakistan Navy signed contracts for the delivery of a total of four frigates. All four units will be built in China and delivered by 2021.
Type 054A/P (P standing for Pakistan) is an export version of the frigate which is already in service with the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN).
The Pakistan Navy said the steel cutting milestone was achieved ahead of schedule adding that, once constructed, the warship would be one of the largest and technologically advanced platforms in the fleet.
Type 054A frigates displace 4,000 tons and are equipped with vertical launch systems (VLS), a 76mm gun, close in weapons systems and torpedo launchers. They have a flight deck and hangar capable of supporting medium lift helicopters.