Cameroon’s Navy will receive two patrol vessels from China, where they are presently under construction.
The two vessels, with pennant numbers P108 and P109, are under construction at Qingdao by Poly Technologies, which is a regular supplier of ships to African navies. Cameroon’s minister of defence Edgar Alain Mebe Ngo’o visited the two vessels in China on April 15 to inspect progress on their construction.
According to Journal de Cameroun, the vessels accommodate 40 people. Armament includes a 76 mm PJ26 cannon, based on the AK-176 gun.
The vessels are being built with funding from the China Exim Bank. A contract for the vessels was signed in October 2013, two years after President Paul Biya visited China.
Cameroon’s Navy has been expanding recently, having taken delivery of two new Spanish patrol boats and a landing craft from Grup Aresa Internacional. The 23 metre Aresa 2300 landing craft and two 24 metre Aresa 2400 CPV Defender patrol boats were commissioned at the Cameroon Navy Base in Douala on November 21 last year.
The Spanish shipbuilding group has worked extensively with Cameroon, supplying a sizeable number of vessels to its Navy, which has 12 Aresa boats in service. This figure includes six Aresa 750 Commandos RIBs – delivered in August 2012 -, five 1200 Stealth RIBs and one 1200 Defcon RIB – delivered in May 2013. Two 32 metre patrol boats were scheduled to be delivered early this year.
Cameroon’s navy is relatively well equipped in order to secure Cameroon’s oil installations and prevent maritime crime and is optimised for coastal and river patrol, especially in light of rising levels of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea. It has around 40 coastal, inshore and river patrol craft as well as several combat patrol vessels.