China has launched first of the four advanced naval warships it is building for Pakistan, amid deepening defence ties between the two all-weather allies.
The launching ceremony for the first warship was held at the Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard in Shanghai on Sunday.
Pakistan-China defence ties turn a new chapter with the launch of the first ship of Type-054 class frigate, Pakistan’s state-run APP news agency reported.
The Type-054 class, equipped with the latest surface, subsurface, anti-air weapons, combat management system, and sensors will be one of the technologically advanced surface platforms of the Pakistan Navy fleet, the report said.
Pakistan signed a contract with the China Shipbuilding Trading Company Ltd. (CSTC) for the delivery of two Type-054 A/P frigates in 2017.
Last year, the Chinese official media reported that under a major arms deal between the two all-weather allies, China would build four advanced frigates for Pakistan Navy.
The terms of the deal and the price of the ships were not revealed.
The launching of the ship coincided with the 2nd strategic dialogue between Foreign Minister of China Wang Yi and his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi held at the Chinese holiday resort of Hainan on August 21.