Navy pushing to seal contract for missile-armed interdiction crafts from Israel this year

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Philippine Navy chief Vice Admiral Robert Empedrad told reporters on November 11 at the anniversary celebration of Philippine Marine Corps that the contract for acquisition of fast attack interdiction craft – missile (FAIC-M) from Israel is being pushed to be signed before 2019 ends.

“Mukhang makakakuha tayo ng budget of P10 billion. We are pushing it to be signed this year,” Vice Admiral Empedrad said as quoted by Inquirer.net.

“Israel said that if we sign the contract by next year, hindi mai-dedeliver within the term of the President. If we sign this year, it will all be delivered by March 2022, which is very good for the term of the President,” he added.

In June this year, the Navy spokesperson said “the FAICM is intended for the refleeting program of our eight Patrol Killer Medium (PKM) and Fast Attack Craft Patrols, which are employed for maritime interdiction operations.”

“With the FAICM, the PN shall have the capability to defend the key sea lines of communications (SLOCs), such as Mindoro, Balabac, Sibutu and Basilan Straits against conventional threats. Operating in restricted waters, the FAICMs can interdict surface threats and launch NLOS missiles safely using the surrounding littoral areas as maneuver space and cover,” the Navy spokesperson added.

The Philippine Navy is also programmed to acquire 2 new corvettes and 6 offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) under Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Modernization Program Second Horizon.