China's first Type-056 frigate with the hull number of 582 was delivered to the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy on Feb. 25. The Type-056 frigate has good seakeeping ability, it is relatively cheap, and it fully meets the requirements to patrol Chinese waters, Cui Yiliang, executive editor of the Modern Ships Magazine, told the People's Daily Online.
The new frigate will be deployed primarily for patrol and escort missions as well as anti-submarine operations and sea combat tasks, independent or in coordination with other forces. When talking about the main advantages of the Type-056 frigate, Cui said that its primary duty is to patrol sea areas. The South China Sea has relatively high requirements for single patrol boats because it is far from the coast and is often choppy. Patrolling is a daily labor-intensive task, and requires a large number of soldiers. Therefore, patrol boats should be deployed in a large scale and cost less than warships. Unlike fighting, patrolling does not need too many weapons. Overall, ships designed for patrolling should have good seakeeping ability and be relatively cheap.
Cui said that although specific features of the Type-056 frigate have not been disclosed, it can be seen from its outside appearance that it has the above characteristics. The frigate is big enough to patrol Chinese waters, and is equipped with only a small number of weapons, which helps to keep its production cost under control. Overall, the Type-056 frigate is suitable for patrolling Chinese sea areas.
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