The second of two 97-meter multi-role response vessels (MMRVs) acquired by the Department of Transportation - Philippines (DOTr) for the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) under the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project Phase II (MSCIP Phase 2) will be launched at the Shimonoseki Shipyard of Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. in Japan tomorrow, 18 November 2021.
The two MRRVs will be the largest vessels of the PCG’s fleet, once delivered. These MRRV's modeled after the Japan Coast Guard (JCG) Kunigami-class vessels are expected to improve the PCG's maritime security and maritime safety capabilities.
Each of the new MRRVs measure approximately 97 meters, has a maximum speed of not less than 24 knots, and an endurance of not less than 4,000 nautical miles. The ships are capable of conducting sustained maritime patrols in the country’s maritime jurisdictions, including the West Philippine Sea and Philippine Rise.
In addition, the two vessels will significantly boost the capabilities of the PCG in conducting maritime search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, as well as humanitarian assistance and disaster response operations.
Through the accelerated construction of the Japanese shipbuilder, the first 97-meter MRRV is expected to arrive in Manila by March 2022, while the second vessel will arrive two months later or by May 2022.
The new vessels will significantly enhance the capabilities of the PCG in responding to maritime incidents in the country's waters and exclusive economic zone (EEZ), such as in the conduct of search and rescue operations and maritime security patrols, as well as in the enforcement of marine environmental laws.
The MSCIP Phase 2 is a Japanese-assisted project funded by an Official Development Assistance (ODA) Loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) amounting to approximately JPY 16,455,000,000 (JPY 16.5 billion).
The contract between the DOTr and Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. for the design, construction, and delivery of the two 97-meter MRRVs amounting to JPY 14,550,000,000 (JPY 14.6 billion) was signed on 27 December 2019 and became effective on 08 May 2020.
The first 97-meter MRRV was formally launched at the Shimonoseki Shipyard on 26 July 2021.