Report: Philippine planning first ever submarine procurement - M5 Dergi
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Report: Philippine planning first ever submarine procurement

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The Philippine government is planning to acquire its first submarine, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. revealed last month.

The president said that multiple countries have offered to furnish the underwater vessels to Manila, including building them at Philippine shipyards.

However, he added that the acquisition plan is at an initial stage, being studied by the administration.

“There is a plan. But it is still in progress. Operating a sub is in no way a small commitment. It is a huge responsibility and commitment due to the training involved, the equipment that’s involved, and the operational requirements are significant,” Inquirer quoted him as saying.

French Offer

The French government last year offered to build submarines for the Philippines.

French Ambassador to the Philippines Michele Boccoz said that France was among those that submitted proposals to build the vessels for the Southeast Asian nation.

According to Inquirer, Manila even sent personnel to France for submarine training.

Submarine Base to Deter Chinese Navy
The Philippine Navy has been looking to acquire its first-ever submarine since 2021. However, the coronavirus pandemic hampered the search.

The country has disputes with China over control of stretches of the South China Sea and several small islands close to its shore.

Citing defense experts, Stars and Stripes wrote that Subic Bay, an extension of the South China Sea and a former US naval facility with shipyards, could be an ideal site for a submarine to patrol the South China Sea.

“The acquisition of conventional submarines capable of operating in these waters would bolster the ability of the Philippines to deter China by adding uncertainty and risk to Chinese naval deployments,” University of New South Wales emeritus professor Carlyle Thayer told the outlet.

Thayer added that Manila is also “hoping” to build a submarine base at Sangley Point, south of Manila, which would help it “resist Chinese encroachment into the area.”

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