Missile frigates to be delivered ahead of schedule: Empedrad

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South Korean-shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) vowed to deliver the country’s first-ever two missile frigates, a year ahead of schedule, said Philippine Navy (PN) flag-officer-in-command Vice Admiral Robert Empedrad on Monday.

He made this statement during the 121st founding anniversary of the PN which was held at Naval Base Heracleo Alano, Sangley Point in Cavite province.

“Next year will be the much anticipated completion of our four-dimensional missile frigates, BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150) and BRP Antonio Luna (FF-151). HHI in the Republic of Korea, the number one shipbuilder in the world, deliver the two frigates in April and September of next year,” Empedrad said.

BRP Jose Rizal was supposed to be delivered by September of 2020 and BRP Antonio Luna, which had its keel-laying last May 23, was to be handed over to the PN by 2021.

The Department of National Defense signed a PHP18-billion contract for the two ships, including weapons systems. BRP Jose Rizal has its launching ceremonies on the same date in Ulsan, South Korea.

With Empedrad’s pronouncements, the two frigates are expected to enter PN service by 2020 or a year ahead of schedule. PNA