Military Capabilities

Colombia plans to build larger OPVs for Pacific Coast

11 January 2017

COTECMAR, Colombia's State-owned shipyard, is designing an offshore patrol vessel (OPV) larger than its current 1,800-ton 20 de Julio-class vessels to meet a Colombian Navy requirement for patrol ships with greater range.

The larger patrol vessels would be intended for longer patrol deployments in more distant areas, for missions including counter-trafficking and protecting the Andean country's exclusive economic zone.

Such vessels would be based mainly on Colombia's west coast for Pacific Ocean deployments, whereas smaller 20 de Julio-class vessels would be based and deployed around the Caribbean Sea, a military source in Bogota told IHS Jane's.

The enlarged OPV concept being developed by COTECMAR, which is currently in the concept definition phase, envisions a 2,500 ton, 93 m long patrol ship, armed with medium and light guns and firearms, and fitted with a flight deck and hangar for a 10-ton helicopter.

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