President Tsai Ing-wen hosted the delivery ceremony of Chiayi and the naming and launching ceremony of the second Chiayi class patrol ship, Hsinchu (CG5002). She also conducted the bottle tossing for Hsinchu.
Hsinchu is named after the major county and city of northern Taiwan, where Hsinchu Science Park, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) and hundreds of major Taiwanese high-tech companies are located.
Senior officials of Tsai administration, National Security Council (NSC) Secretary-General Koo Li-Hsiung (顧立雄), Minister of Ocean Affairs Council (OCA) Lee Chung-wei (李仲威), Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-Hua (王美花), Minister of Veterans Affairs Council Feng Shih-Kuan (馮世寬), NSC Deputy Secretary-General York Chen (陳文政), Kaohsiung City Mayor Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁), CGA Director-General Chou Mei-wu (周美伍) also attend the ceremony.
During the ceremony, President Tsai said that this is her second visit to CSBC’s Kaohsiung shipyard in the month, last visit was for the launching ceremony of Taiwan’s first LPD, and today is for the delivery of OCA’s first 4000-ton class patrol ship. These two ‘first’ shows the government’s resolution and confidence in conducting the ”Indigenous National Defense Policy (國防自主國艦國造)”.
About Taiwan’s new Chiayi-class patrol vessel
According to Taiwanese media reports, the Chiayi-class patrol vessel was set to have a 4000-ton displacement when it was planned. However, the design was changed during the construction, and the class actually has a displacement in excess of 5000-ton. CSBC chairman Cheng Wen-Lon (鄭文隆) said that Chiayi-class have a 5044-ton displacement, is capable of withstanding Class 10 winds and has an endurance of more than 10,000 nautical miles
The basic design of Chiayi-class is based on U.S. Coast Guards’ Legend-class cutter. Chiayi-class has 2.75-inch rockets as the main weapon, 20mm guns, remote weapons stations, and water cannons for maritime law enforcement use. It also has some space for installing anti-ship missiles when it is needed during wartime.
Chiayi-class has a helipad and a hangar which are capable for operating and accommodating ROC Navy and National Airborne Service Corps’ UH-60, S-70C and other helicopters. The capability to operate helicopters is considered with the defense of the Pratas and Spratly Islands in mind.
Chiayi-class is also equipped with field hospital standard medical equipment and a negative pressure chamber, which enables the ship to conduct international humanitarian relief missions.
Chiayi will be transferred to Central Sector Flotilla of Coast Guard Administration’s Fleet Branch.
Taiwan Coast Guard’s shipbuilding program
Taiwan’s Ocean Affairs Council started a shipbuilding programme of 141 ships in order to enhance the capability of Coast Guard Administration. The programme started in 2018 and scheduled to end in 2027.
Four 4000-ton class patrol vessels, six 1000-ton class patrol vessels, twelve 600-ton class patrol vessels, seventeen 100-ton class patrol boats, fifty-two 35-ton class patrol boats and fifty littoral utility boats are included in the program.