China starts constructing ‘most advanced’ warship for Pakistan
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China starts constructing ‘most advanced’ warship for Pakistan

The official China Daily newspaper quoted the China State Shipbuilding Corporation — one of the country’s largest state-owned defense contractors — that the construction of the ship had started in the Hudong-Zhonghua shipyard in Shanghai. The ship is a version of the Chinese Navy's most advanced guided missile frigate, the paper said, without specifying its type. It will be equipped with modern detection and weapon systems and will be capable of anti-ship, anti-submarine and air defense operations, according to the China State Shipbuilding Corporation. According to the Pakistan Navy, the ship's class is Type 054AP, which means it is based on the Type 054A of the People's Liberation Army Navy.  In December 2018, the Pakistan Navy said that once constructed, the warship will be one of the largest and technologically advanced platforms of Pakistan's Navy and strengthen the country's capability to respond to future challenges, maintain peace and stability and the balance of power in the Indian Ocean region. It will also support the Pakistani Navy's initiative of securing sea lanes for international shipping by patrolling distant waters, it said in a statement on its twitter account. The Type 054A ship has a loaded displacement of 4,000 metric tonnes and is equipped with advanced radars and missiles. A researcher at the People’s Liberation Navy Army said that Pakistan had been previously using Western radars on its ships constructed by Chinese shipbuilders as it believed that Western naval technologies were better than Chinese. "But it seems that all weapons and radars on the new ship will be Chinese products, which reflects our progress in the industry and the Pakistani Navy’ s confidence in our technology and capability," Cao Weidong said. The warship will be China's largest and most powerful vessel export, Cao added. China is the largest supplier of weapons to Pakistan.

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