“The attack submarines that our Navy intends to procure will particularly [be] helpful in protecting our maritime domain in the deeper waters of the West Philippine Sea,” House of Representatives strategic intelligence committee chairperson Surigao del Sur Representative Johnny Pimentel said in a statement.
He added that submarines “can stealthily conduct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations against unwelcome Chinese maritime militia vessels.”
“We are not just a coastal state like Vietnam and Malaysia, which by the way have their own submarines. We are in fact one of the world’s largest archipelagic states, just like Indonesia,” he added.
“We are completely surrounded by waters, so submarines should form part of our mix of defensive combat ships,” Pimentel added.
“We welcome France’s commitment to help our Navy develop a submarine force,” he said.