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Taiwan Cabinet greenlights new Coast Guard ships

Coast Guard Administration to build 6 new 3,000-ton patrol ships

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Coast Guard Administration boat patrolling Taiwan's maritime border. 

Coast Guard Administration boat patrolling Taiwan's maritime border.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Cabinet has recently approved a budget more than NT$12.9 billion (US$428.53 million) for the Coast Guard Administration to buy six 3,000-ton patrol vessels.

A government official familiar with the matter pointed out on Friday (Oct. 15) the six ships will be significantly larger in tonnage and have better capabilities than existing Coast Guard vessels. This will enhance Taiwan’s ability to protect its maritime borders, he said.

The official added that after Taiwan and the U.S. signed an agreement on bilateral coast guard cooperation March 25, the two countries held the first Taiwan-U.S. Maritime Patrol Working Group online conference in August to share in-depth views on maritime law enforcement, combating illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing activities, and joint maritime search and rescue, Liberty Times reported.

The two countries agreed that they will hold regular meetings to coordinate on maritime issues of common concern. The official said the budget for the shipbuilding project is NT$12.93 billion.

He added bidding for construction will be processed next year. In addition to launching a new wave of domestic shipbuilding, the six vessels will participate in Taiwan-U.S. Coast Guard joint exercises.