Royal Thai Navy’s New Funding for Second New Frigate
Feb 02, 2023
BANGKOK: The Royal Thai Navy has requested 15 billion baht (about US $457.9 million) over the next five years to fund its plan to acquire a new frigate. The government has already agreed in principle. The request was made by the Ministry of Defence in a budgetary plan proposed for the 2024 fiscal year, starting on Oct 1, 2023.
The frigate would be the second new frigate sized vessel for the navy. The first instalment requested in the 2024 fiscal year is 1.7 billion baht(US $51.9 million). It was also reported that the government wants the new frigate o be constructed locally in partnership with a foreign shipbuilder as one of the possible partners, according to a Bangkok Post report, citing a source in the Navy.
The report also said that shipyards from South Korea, Russia, Spain and France are among the companies that had expressed interest in the project are considered as potential partners in the construction of the ship.
The warship will be built as part of the upcoming government programme for the priority development of the national defence complex. According to the terms of the contract proposed to the foreign partners, the partner will be obliged not only to supply components for the assembly of the ship in Thailand and participate in the construction of the frigate, but also to transfer all the technologies used in the construction of the ship to the Royal Thai Navy, according to reports.
The Royal Thai Navy is equipped with various vessel designs from abroad including the United States, China to Spain which supplied an aircraft carrier HTMS Chakri Naruebet. Some warships are bult locally, such as the Krabi-class offshore patrol vessels contructed by the Bangkok Dock Company with technology transfer and support provided by BAE Systems
The newest frigate HTMS Bhumibol Adulyadej, named after the late Thai King Rama IX and commissioned into service in 2019, was built by South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME). The frigate is pictured above during exercises in the Andaman Sea with the US Navy. – shp/adj/mgm