• The LPD will help with patrol missions and disaster relief operations
  • The Type 054A frigate has enormous firepower and surveillance potential
  • China reportedly commissioned eight destroyers and six corvettes this year

Proving how well-oiled its military machinery is, China launched three warships in a single day, two of which are for export. The vessels – a 071E landing platform dock (LPD) and two Type 054A frigates – were launched at the Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding yard near Shanghai.

This comes as local Chinese media claims the country has commissioned at least eight destroyers and six corvettes this year, reported South China Morning Post.

While the 071E landing platform dock (LPD) will be handed over to the Thai Navy, one of the frigates was ordered by Pakistan. The latter had ordered four such warships in 2017 and 2018.

The LPD, ordered by Thailand in September 2019, can be used to deploy helicopters and is expected to perform patrol missions, logistics tasks, and disaster relief operations. Local news website The Chiang Rai Times said the Thai Navy could put the LPD to use for naval transport missions. It could also be used for civilian purposes, such as disaster relief and humanitarian rescue missions.

The warship for Pakistan Navy has been equipped with an SR2410C radar, a 3D multifunction electronically scanned array radar. The new frigate had enormous firepower and surveillance potential and is so technologically advanced that it could take on multiple missions.

China commissioned the first of the Type 054A frigates in early November. The report added that the Type 054A frigate is considered the "backbone of the Chinese surface combatant fleet." There are 30 such active vessels in the service.

The simultaneous launch of the warships reflects the country's increasing naval construction capacity that boasts of over 20 yards supporting naval surface ship construction.

Besides, there are dozens of commercial shipyards that exceed the largest US shipyards in size and throughput, the report added.

In 2015, Beijing launched a major military modernization drive and pumped millions of dollars into the research and development of equipment.

China’s growing naval power was recently thrust into the spotlight by German Chief of Navy, Vice Adm. Kay-Achim Schonbach, who said PLA Naval power was "explosive" and a "cause for concern."

Schonbach said China is increasing the size of its navy by the equivalent of the entire French navy every four years.

“I can understand the political leaders in China ... now say ‘We want to have a big navy. We want a blue-water navy’ — of course, also to make power,” Schonbach told CNBC.

However, Beijing reacted to this saying the concerns are misplaced. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told a media briefing that "I don’t think there is any need for such concerns" and that China is a builder of world peace.

Chinese Ships in formation.
Representation. Chinese warships during a drill with Russia. Reuters/China Daily