China and Thailand Sign Shipbuilding Agreement for Type 071E LPD
(Source: China Military Online; issued Sept 11, 2019)
BEIJING --- China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) and the Royal Thai Navy held the signing ceremony of the shipbuilding agreement on exporting Type 071E landing platform dock (LPD) in Beijing on Sept 9.

This is the first time for China to export abroad amphibious transport dock, or dock landing ship, and also marks a major achievement between China and Thailand in comprehensive strategic cooperation, which is of great significance for the further deepening of China-Thailand military trade cooperation and promotion of regional peace and stability. Leaders from relevant state and military departments of both countries attended the signing ceremony.

Yang Jincheng, president of CSIC, said that CSIC and the Royal Thai Navy share a long history of cooperation and yield fruitful results from this cooperation. Since the establishment of the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership between China and Thailand in 2012, the friendly relation between the two countries has continuously deepened, laying a solid foundation for CSIC and the Royal Thai Navy to carry out more extensive and pragmatic project cooperation.

With advanced design and shipbuilding capability, high product quality and effective quality assurance system, CSIC will build this project into an "excellent project" of its military trade brand and a new example of friendly cooperation between CSIC and the Royal Thai Navy, the Chinese and Thailand governments as well as the Chinese and Thai people.

It is reported that being a specific model for international trade, Type 071E has been integrated with several major improvements and upgrades in comparison with its prototype, based on the experience and lessons accumulated through years of practice and the needs of potential foreign trade customers. It is even more advanced in technology and more powerful in comprehensive performance than the PLA’s in-commission Type 071 integrated LPD.

As for the significant advantages of Type 071E, there have been three points to make. First, it has reached the world's advanced level in terms of technology. As far as integrated operation capability is concerned, it is not left behind by any competitors.

Second, its prototype, Type 071 integrated landing ship, has been serving in the Chinese Navy for many years and proven to be a mature platform.

Third, compared with landing ship platforms provided by many developed countries, Type 071E is more competitive in cost performance and could be said to be of good quality and low price.

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China to Build Warship for Thailand
(Source: Global Times; issued Sept 12, 2019)
China and Thailand have signed a deal that will see a Chinese shipbuilding company build a Type 071E landing platform dock (LPD) warship for the Thai navy, a move which shows deepened arms trade cooperation between the two countries, a Chinese military expert said on Wednesday.

China and Thailand signed the agreement in Beijing on Monday, with the general manager of the China State Shipbuilding Corporation Limited (CSSC), Yang Jincheng, and the commander-in-chief of the Royal Thai Navy, Luechai Ruddit, participating, according to a statement CSSC released on Tuesday.

This also marks the first time China has exported an LPD, the statement said.

The statement did not provide further details, including the ship's worth or when the ship will be delivered.

The Type 071 LPD is a 20,000 ton-class warship that can carry combat personnel and equipment, including air-cushioned landing craft (LCAC), amphibious assault vehicles, tanks and helicopters.

It is part of the main battle equipment being used by China's People's Liberation Army Navy.

Thailand could use the warship to conduct naval transport missions, boosting the country's troop deployment capability in the high seas, Wei Dongxu, a Beijing-based military analyst, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

It can also be used for civilian purposes, like disaster relief and humanitarian rescue missions, because as a large naval platform, it can carry relief goods and get victims out of disaster areas, Wei said.

The variant of the Type 071 for Thailand is called the Type 071E, with the E possibly meaning "export." It could be a customized version based on the needs of the Thai navy, Wei said, noting that it will likely have no significant changes compared to the domestically commissioned ones in China.

Thailand operates other Chinese weapons like the VT4 tanks made by the China North Industries Corporation (NORINCO).

Wei said that arms trade cooperation between the two countries is getting deeper, and Thailand could purchase even more Chinese weapons like LCAC, amphibious assault vehicles, and helicopters that could fit the Type 071E.

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