“The President has approved the modernization of the Philippine Navy and most of our capability upgrades... those ships that we are acquiring for our modernization program will be coming from South Korea’s shipbuilding companies,” he told members of the Naval Task Force 87 (NTF 87) upon their arrival at Jeju Island in South Korea Friday night from Vladivostok, Russia.
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‘Navy’s modern ships to be sourced mostly from SoKor’
Jaime Laude (The Philippine Star) - October 15, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Navy (PN) will be sourcing most of the floating assets for its capability upgrade projects from South Korea, Navy chief Vice Admiral Robert Empedrad said.

“The President has approved the modernization of the Philippine Navy and most of our capability upgrades... those ships that we are acquiring for our modernization program will be coming from South Korea’s shipbuilding companies,” he told members of the Naval Task Force 87 (NTF 87) upon their arrival at Jeju Island in South Korea Friday night from Vladivostok, Russia.

Empedrad said the South Korea Navy would be training Filipino sailors who will be assigned on sea duties aboard the soon-to-be-delivered Pohang Class Corvette and two brand-new missile frigates currently being built by the South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries.

South Korea has handed over one of its newly decommissioned Pohang corvettes to the Philippine government for free, except for the cost of transfer and the warship’s refurbishment.

The Navy chief, along with some of his staff, was in Jeju Island, to personally welcome NTF 87 under the command of Capt. Florante Gagua and BRP Tarlac skipper Capt. Estelito Lagadia.

BRP Tarlac dropped anchor at Jeju Island to take part in the Western Pacific Naval Symposium hosted by the South Korea Navy. The naval event includes an international fleet review (IFR), which BRP Tarlac and her embarked NTF 87 failed to participate in due to some voyage glitches.

“You may not have participated (in the IFR, but) it’s better late than never,” Empedrad told the NTF 87 contingent including Filipino sailors and Marines, adding he is very happy that everybody arrived in Jeju safe and sound.

He said that the Philippine Navy would host the WPNS and the IFR in 2020.

“Those countries who joined the WPNS and IFR will be going to the Philippines in 2020 as we will be hosting the event, the very first in the history of the Philippine Navy,” he added.

MODERNIZATION PHILIPPINE NAVY ROBERT EMPEDRAD
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