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Japan commissions a flurry of new ships

23rd March 2021 - 01:00 GMT | by Gordon Arthur in Christchurch

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Japan's navy continues to pump out new ships, though it is far outpaced by Chinese naval shipbuilding.

The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) has welcomed two new vessels in recent weeks – a minesweeper and an Aegis-equipped destroyer – and a new submarine is due to enter service this month too.

The ocean-going minesweeper JS Etajima with hull number 306 was commissioned as the third minesweeper in the Awaji class. Etajima had been launched by Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) in December 2019.

The vessel has a fibre-reinforced plastic hull, and it measures 67m long and displaces 690t. Equipment includes a ZQS-4 sonar that can detect mines in shallow or deep water, plus a JM61 Sea

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Gordon Arthur

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Gordon Arthur


Gordon Arthur is the Asia Pacific editor for Shephard Media. Born in Scotland and educated …

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