Algerian Navy orders Chinese corvette


Algeria’s Navy will in two years’ time take delivery of a 96 metre long corvette from China’s Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group (HZ).

The project was revealed by United Kingdom-based maritime classification society Lloyd’s Register, which on 24 June said it had been selected to provide assurance and certification services to HZ for two significant naval projects with the Algerian and Thai navies. HZ is a subsidiary of the China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC).

The Algerian navy’s new corvette is designed for patrol, escort and maritime protection missions within the nation’s Exclusive Economic Zone, Lloyd’s Register said. The corvette incorporates a helipad and a crew of 78 people, has a range of 3 500 nautical miles and is capable of top speeds in excess of 27 knots. It is scheduled for delivery in 2022.

Lloyd’s Register head of greater China Maogen Xue said the society has had a long relationship with Hudong-Zhonghua and Algeria’s navy, and supported the construction of three 2 800 tonne corvettes for the Algerian Navy between 2013 and 2016.

Xue was referring to the C28A corvettes Algeria ordered from China in March 2012. The 120 metre long corvettes are armed with a 76 mm main gun, FM-90N launcher for HQ-7 surface-to-air missiles and YJ-82/C-802 anti-ship missiles.

It is not clear which model of corvette Algeria will be receiving, but it could be similar to the Pattani or Type 056 classes. The Pattani class is 95.5 metres long and is currently in service with the Royal Thai Navy. The type displaces nearly 1 500 tonnes and is armed with a 76 mm main gun, two GI-2 20 mm cannons and two 12.7 mm machineguns.

The Type 056 is in service with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy and has been exported to Nigeria as the 95 metre long 1 800 ton P18N patrol vessel and Bangladesh as the 90 metre long 1 300 ton C13B corvette.

Algeria has received a significant amount of military hardware from China in recent years, from ships to unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). This includes Norinco SM4 120 mm self-propelled mortars, W86 120 mm mortars, PLZ45 self-propelled howitzers, SR5 multiple rocket launchers, WA-021/Type-88 155 mm towed guns and CH-3 and CH-4 UAVs built by the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC).