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How the Peruvian Navy is equipped with 3 OPV ships

The protection of the waters of the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) by the navy of the various Latin American countries is exposed to various threats. Attempts to plunder natural wealth by third parties and even violate protected areas are a constant and one of the major problems in the vast Atlantic and Pacific waters that bathe this region.

In June this year, Ecuador had to face strict surveillance of a Chinese fishing fleet of more than 260 vessels fishing in the same border area of ​​the Galpagos Islands nature reserve. A few months later, last September, it was the Peruvian Navy that identified as another large ship of the same nationality, made up of no fewer than 400 vessels of different types, moving south after being expelled from the waters of Ecuador’s EEZ The hotel is located about 230 miles from its coast, near the port of Pisco.

The repetitive actions of these huge and ferocious floating factories in Asia require renewed efforts from the military navy and coast guard. Its activity, its dimensions and its questionable fishing methods pose a serious risk to the sustainability and biodiversity of the species of the Peruvian territorial sea.

In this scenario, Admiral Fernando Cerdn Ruiz, until recently its commander-general, declared in a speech on the occasion of the institution’s 199th anniversary: ​​The state is responsible for an extensive water area through the Peruvian Navy, the responsibility for search and rescue (SAR), and illegal suppression Activities as well as protection of the aquatic environment that we have adequately fulfilled. We have found, however, that it would be desirable to have Coast Guard offshore patrol boats that can transport helicopters called Ocean Patrol Boats (OPV) and that have the capacity to stay at sea for extended periods of time.

For example, the Navy received approval for the Public Investment Project (PIP), which is described as an expansion of the capacity to conduct Surface Coast Guard operations with OPV patrols in the sea area and in the SAR (Search and Rescue) area of ​​responsibility and the acquisition of 3 OPV (Offshore Patrol Vessel) from 1,500 to 2,200 tons. at full load.

Ambitious project

The estimated investment would be approximately $ 85 million per unit. His job will be on behalf of the Directorate General of Captains and Coast Guard (DICAPI) to carry out control and surveillance, patrol and interdiction missions and search and rescue operations between 100 and 200 miles of the Peruvian territorial sea. Called gray, meaning an area of ​​166,307.4 square miles which is expanded to 3,000 miles in the SAR under the regulations of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) with an area of ​​2,230,166.25 square miles.

The need for OPVs to cover the area up to 200 miles is considered a priority as DICAPI currently only owns the BAP Guardiamarina San Martin (PO-201) ocean patrol boat which is at the end of its useful life and needs to be withdrawn from service soon. In addition to these, there are approximately 30 coastal patrol boats of the Chicama (Sea Ark), Zorritos / Parachique and Type 957Y classes, generally operating up to mile 20; and 4 Pativilca River maritime patrol boats that carry out their operations within a range of up to 100 miles and, due to the lack of OPV, even reach 150 depending on operational requirements.

The OPV requirement was recently compounded by the presence of just over 400 ships in the Chinese industrial fishing fleet off the Peruvian coast. They are built in the Servicio Industrial de la Marina (SIMA-Per) shipyards, create around 1,800 jobs and indirectly benefit a considerable number of small and medium-sized companies. They will enable SIMA to modernize its equipment and high-end construction processes, train its staff and acquire new skills through technology transfer.

Its length is 80 to 100 m, the beam 10 to 14 m and the depth not less than 6.5 m. You will have a CODAD (combined diesel and diesel) or CODAG (combined diesel and gas) propulsion, which offers an economical speed of 12 knots and a maximum of 20 knots with a range of 6,000 nautical miles. and an autonomy of 30 days. They can carry 2 20-foot containers and 2 RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) and have a flight deck and hangar for 1 AB-412SP helicopter. The crew consists of 70 employees and the armament consists of 1 RCWS (Remote Control Weapon System) of 30 mm. and 2 machine guns of 12.7 mm.

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