Should the contract for the Department of National Defense's P18-billion frigate program be awarded to a qualified shipbuilder within the year, the country will be making eight payments for the two ships which will give the Philippine Navy a much-needed boost in surveillance and firepower capability.
Commodore Roland Mercado, Philippine Navy technical working group head for the frigate project, said the proposed payment scheme can be broken down as follows:
* 15 percent during the awarding of the contract;
* 15 percent upon finalization of the contract;
* 10 percent for the laying of the keel of the ships;
* 10 percent for the construction of the vessel;
* 15 percent for installation of engines, weapons, communications, sensor systems, and auxiliary machinery;
* 15 percent during the acceptance trials;
* 10 percent upon delivery of the frigates to the
* 10 percent upon completion of the warranty period.
Mercado said that this payment scheme is still for approval of PN flag-officer-in-charge Vice Admiral Jose Luis Alano.
Building of the two ships is expected to be completed within two years.
Some technical specifications of the DND's P18-billion frigate program have been revealed by MaxDefense:
This includes a capability to conduct air-to-air warfare (AAW), anti-surface warfare (ASuW), anti-submarine warfare (ASW), and electronic warfare (EW).
Aside from this, these naval vessels should be able to do extended maritime patrol with an embarked helicopter and operating up to Sea State 6.
It must also have a range of 4,500 nautical miles at 15 knots, endurance of 30 days in tropical condition, and capable of running up to 25 knots of continuous speed.
Navigation equipment of the two ships, at a minimum, must consist of two navigation radars, GPS, depth sounding set, and vessel tracking system compatible to PN's existing system.
The frigates' weapons system, at a minimum, should consist of a 76-mm gun; stabilized secondary gun; four .50-caliber machine guns, surface-to-surface missile launchers, surface-to-air missile launching system, and anti-submarine torpedoes.