Sun, Jan 06, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Work begins on CGA ship

Staff writer, with CNA

Jong Shyn Shipbuilding Corp chairman Han Pi-hsiang, second left, Coast Guard Administration Fleet Branch head Hsieh Ching-chin, second right, and others join hands at an event hosted by Hsieh in Kaohsiung on Friday to mark the beginning of the construction of a 600-tonne coast guard patrol ship.

Photo: CNA, provided by the Coast Guard Administration

Construction on a 600-tonne Coast Guard Administration (CGA) patrol ship by a Taiwan-based shipbuilding company began in Kaohsiung on Friday.

The ship, being built by Jong Shyn Shipbuilding Corp, is the first of a dozen to be produced by the company for the coast guard.

CGA Fleet Branch head Hsieh Ching-chin (謝慶欽) and Jong Shyn chairman Han Pi-hsiang (韓碧祥) presided over a ceremony to mark the start of the work.

Hsieh said the project was a milestone for the nation’s shipbuilding industry and the vessel would boost the coast guard’s patrol capabilities.

The design is based on blueprints for the Republic of China Navy’s Tuo Chiang-class corvettes, but includes high-pressure water cannons and special communications and weapons systems, the Fleet Branch said.

According to a coast guard development plan, 141 ships — four 4,000-tonne, six 1,000-tonne, 12 600-tonne, 17 100-tonne, 52 35-tonne and 50 coastal multipurpose ships — are to be constructed by 2027.

In other news, Taiwan is to begin mass production next year of CM-34 Clouded Leopard eight-wheeled armored vehicles and complete 284 of the vehicles by 2023, the Ministry of National Defense said.

Four prototypes of the vehicle, officially called the Taiwan Infantry Fighting Vehicle, on Oct. 19 passed pre-mass-production tests, allowing it to enter mass production. The prototypes passed all 62 categories in the tests, but failed two categories in secondary tests.

Improvements have been made, so the ministry has proceeded with mass production of the vehicles, which are to carry Orbital ATK 30mm Mk44 Bushmaster II cannons, a ministry official said on condition of anonymity.

Taiwan has ordered the weapons, the official said.

Compared with the CM-32 models, which carry 40mm automatic grenade launchers, the 30mm cannon has better anti-tank capabilities and can fire several rounds in rapid succession, the official said.

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