The keel-laying ceremony of 2nd MILGEM Class Corvette for Pakistan Navy held at Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works (KS&EW). Minister of National Defence of the Republic of Turkey, H.E Mr. Hulusi Akar, graced the occasion as Chief Guest. The ceremony was attended by Minister for Defence Production, Ms Zubaida Jalal and Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi. The keel-laying of PN MILGEM Corvette as a historic event for Ministry of Defence Production, Pakistan Navy, KS&EW and M/s ASFAT of Turkey. The ceremony was attended by representatives of M/s ASFAT Turkey, Istanbul Naval Shipyard and officials from Government of Pakistan, Pakistan Navy and KS&EW.
The MILGEM Class Corvettes will be one of the most technologically advanced stealth surface platforms of Pakistan Navy Fleet. The vessel is equipped with state-of-the-art weapons & modern sensors including surface to surface, surface to air missiles, anti-submarine weapons and Command & Control system. Induction of this ship in Pakistan Navy would significantly add to the lethality of Pakistan Navy’s capabilities and contribute in maintaining peace, security and balance of power in Indian Ocean Region. These Ships are being constructed as per modern Naval Ship class standards with stealth features. The 2nd MILGEM Class Corvette will be delivered in early half of 2024.
The MILGEM (Milli Gemi or National Ship) project is a national warship program of the Republic of Turkey. Managed by the Turkish Navy, the project aims at developing multipurpose corvettes and frigates that can be deployed in a range of missions, including reconnaissance, surveillance, early warning, anti-submarine warfare, surface-to-surface and surface-to-air warfare, and amphibious operations. As of 2018, the MILGEM project covers four Ada class anti-submarine warfare corvettes and one ELINT corvette, four Istanbul class multipurpose frigates and TF2000 class anti-air warfare destroyers destined for the Turkish Navy, four Jinnah-class frigates for the Pakistan Navy.
The Pakistan ships will be fitted with a 16-Cell VLS behind the main gun for Chinese made medium-range air defense missiles probably LY-80/HHQ-16 variant. The main offensive weapons of the Pakistan ship could be either Chinese C-802 or local Harbah ASCMs. Turkish Aselsan built Gökdeniz close-in weapon system on the Pakistan ship in place of the RAM missile launcher of the Turkish ships. The Pakistan Navy will have CODAD propulsion system instead of CODAG, thus increasing the sea endurance from 10 to 15 days. Pakistan Navy officials stated that, under the agreement, the fourth ship will be entirely designed and constructed in Pakistan which will become first Jinnah-class frigate.