Tonga accepts second Guardian-class patrol boat from Australia

The second Guardian-class patrol boat for Tonga, the VOEA Ngahau Siliva (P302). Photo c/o Marine Link. 

The Tongan Maritime Force has received its second Guardian-class patrol boat, which were donated by the Australian government as part of the the latter's commitment to boost the maritime security capability of Pacific Island nations under the Pacific Maritime Security Program.

The boat, which was named VOEA Ngahau Siliva (P302), was handed over by the Australian Department of Defence (DOD) to the Tongan government in ceremonies held in Henderson, Western Australia on 30 October 2020.

Tonga's High Commissioner to Australia, Her Royal Hightness Princess Latufuipeka Tuku'aho, and Tonga Armed Forces Lt. Col. Tevita Siu Fifita accepted the boat.

As part of the Pacific Patrol Boat Replacement Program (SEA 3036) of the Australian DOD, Tonga will receive 2 Guardian-class patrol boats to replace the Pacific-class patrol boats currently serving the Tongan Maritime Force.

According to Australian Defence Minister Sen. Linda Reynolds, “Tonga’s second Guardian-class Patrol Boat is a considerable step up in Tonga’s maritime capability, and I have no doubt the vessel will admirably serve Tonga and the Pacific region in meeting their maritime security goals”

Tonga received its first Guardian-class patrol boat, named the VOEA Ngahau Koula (P301) on June 2019.

The Guardian-class patrol boat were built by Australian shipbuilder Austal, has an overall length of 39.5 meters, a beam of 8 meters, powered by 2 Caterpillar 3516C diesel engines, and has a top speed of 20 knots. It has a crew of 23 men, and was designed to allow a naval gun of up to 30mm calibre, and for port and starboard side 12.7mm heavy machine guns.

[1] Jane's 
[2] Newcastle on Hunter

Tonga accepts second Guardian-class patrol boat from Australia Tonga accepts second Guardian-class patrol boat from Australia Reviewed by Asia Pacific Defense Journal on November 06, 2020 Rating: 5

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