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Pakistan Navy commissions its first of four Type 054A/P frigates

The Pakistan Navy announced on 8 November that it commissioned PNS Tughril , its first of four Chinese-built Type 054A/P frigates, in a ceremony held at the Hudong-Zhonghua shipyard in Shanghai. (Pakistan Navy)

The Pakistan Navy (PN) announced on 8 November that it has inducted into service its first of four Type 054A/P multirole frigates being built by China's Hudong-Zhonghua shipyard.

Named PNS Tughril , the 134 m-long frigate – which was launched in August 2020 – entered service in a ceremony held at the shipbuilder's facilities in Shanghai that was also attended by Pakistan's Ambassador to China, Moin Ul Haque.

The commissioning comes after the shipbuilder launched the third ship of the Tughril class around early August while the second entered the water in January. The fourth and final frigate is also under construction and expected to be launched later this year.

The contract for the first two frigates is believed to have been signed in 2017, and a further contract for two more ships was announced in June 2018, when it was also indicated that delivery of all four ships is expected to be completed by 2022.

The vessels, which are based on the Type 054A (Jiangkai II)-class frigates operated by China's People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), are expected to replace the PN's four remaining Tariq-class frigates – formerly Type 21 (Amazon)-class frigates – built for the Royal Navy in the 1970s.

Little official information has been released about the weapons and sensors being fitted to the Type 054A/P frigates. However, the platforms will potentially deliver a significant uplift in capability comparable to that of the PLAN frigates.

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