Offshore patrol cutter joins Kinmen coast guard

Kinmen, A newly built latest-generation patrol cutter has recently joined the offshore Kinmen County's coast guard unit to boost the island's ability in conducting patrols to disrupt illicit maritime activities, the unit said Monday.

The multi-task offshore patrol cutter, serial number CP-1022, has recently passed required sea trials and has officially joined the coast guard unit.

The cutter is now listed under the unit's Lieyu branch and will soon begin taking part in patrols, the unit said in a press release.

The boat is the third of its kind to join the Kinmen coast guard unit since late last year with the aim of boosting the unit's patrol ability to serve as a deterrent to Chinese fisherman encroaching into Taiwanese waters.

The patrol has become even more important recently given the ongoing COVID-19 coronavirus disease pandemic that originated in China, the unit's deputy head Lo Tien-hsiung (???) told reporters.

Chinese fishing vessels found illegally operating in Taiwan's waters could bring coronavirus into the country, he noted.

The patrol cutter, with a length 11.86 meters and a width of 3.4 meters, has a displacement of 8 tons, according to the unit.

It has a maximum speed of 45 knots and a range of 288 nautical miles, it noted.

The relatively light cutter built from glass fiber, is 15 knots faster than the unit's old patrol vessels and gives the unit an edge in chasing down Chinese fishing vessels illegally operating in Taiwanese waters, it added.

The central-level Coast Guard Administration is scheduled to take delivery of a total of 50 of such offshore patrol cutters before 2027.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel