Missiles readied for frigates
The Philippine Navy will arm its two Jose Rizal-class frigates with surface-to-surface missiles, a military official told the Inquirer.
The official said South Korean-made SSM-700K C-Star missiles will be fitted on BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150) and BRP Antonio Luna (FF-151) on Friday at the frigates’ new homeport at Agila Subic, the former Hanjin shipyard, in Zambales.
This capability would allow the JRC ships to respond to surface threats such as enemy gunboats and warships.
The frigates, built by South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries for P16 billion and delivered in 2020 and 2021, have four antiship missiles each. The C-Star missiles, also locally developed by South Korea, have a contract price of around P1.1 billion.
The missiles have an operational range of 180 kilometers to 200 km.
Another primary weapon of the JRC warships, the French-made Mistral 3 short-range surface-to-air missiles worth around P640 million, were delivered in October.
Flag officer in command Vice Adm. Adeluis Bordado announced at the Navy anniversary rites last week that the missiles of the JRC warships would likely be test-fired in June.
“Hopefully, after this anniversary, maybe next month, we will witness the test-firing of our newly acquired weapon systems—our surface-to-air missiles and surface-to-surface missiles in our frigates,” he said.
The procurement of ammunition for the frigates is part of the Navy’s Frigate Acquisition Project Lot 2.