Israeli small military boat builder Israel Shipyards revealed on May 12 it had received a contract to deliver its Shaldag Mk V to a country in East Asia without specifying the customer.
It is widely believed, however, that the customer is the Philippine Navy. Especially because the Philippine defense ministry issued a notice of award earlier this year to Israel Shipyards for the purchase of up to eight patrol boats under the FAIC-M project.
With FAIC-M, the Philippine Navy wants to replace its patrol killer medium (PKM) boats, which were transferred from South Korea in 1995. The Philippine Navy retired the last of the eight boats in the Tomas Batilo-class this year.
FAIC-M envisions the purchase of four boats armed with a remotely operated weapon station and four boats armed with non-line-of-sight (NLOS) missiles. The 32-meter Shaldag Mk V patrols boats can support this.
The Mk V displaces around 95 tons, has a max speed of over 40 knots, and a range of 1000 nautical miles at 12 knots. The all-aluminum vessels are designed for naval security missions in littoral and EEZ waters.
In its announcement on the deal, Israel Shipyards said the Israeli defense ministry and the customer also arranged the transfer of knowledge regarding the construction of the vessel, as well as the preparation of the customer’s shipyard for vessel construction through an upgrade of the shipyard.
Israel Shipyards will also conduct training at the customer’s facility regarding the construction of the Shaldag Mk V sections as well as maintenance of the vessel.
“We are to greatly value the opportunity to supply a comprehensive service to our customers worldwide, and thankful for the fruitful cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and the customer,” Eitan Zucker, the company’s CEO, said.