Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Mr Teo Chee Hean officiated at the launching ceremony of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN)'s second Littoral Mission Vessel (LMV), Sovereignty, today at the Singapore Technologies Marine Ltd (ST Marine)'s Benoi Yard. The LMV was launched by Mrs Teo Chee Hean, wife of DPM Teo.
Speaking at the ceremony, DPM Teo highlighted that as a maritime nation, Singapore relied heavily on the sea as its lifeline, and it was important that the RSN remained a strong maritime force amidst an increasingly complex and challenging maritime security landscape. He said, "The RSN and its national maritime security partners conduct round-the-clock operations to protect our territorial integrity, counter piracy and respond to maritime contingencies. To deal with the increasing range and complexity of seaborne threats, our maritime security forces have to work very closely together, making the most effective use of the resources and manpower that we have."
DPM Teo also recognised that the LMVs, which tap on technologies, innovative engineering and logistics design to enable smarter operations, would form an important part of Singapore's maritime force. He added, "With its integrated sensors and weapons, as well as advanced C4 systems, the LMV will be more efficient and effective vessels that enhance our ability to detect and respond to current and future maritime threats."
The launch of the LMVs is a significant milestone in the RSN's continued transformation to keep Singapore's seas safe. The LMVs are faster, more versatile, and equipped with sharper capabilities to further strengthen the RSN's effectiveness in seaward defence and the protection of Singapore's sea lines of communication. The LMVs can be quickly configured with mission modules to take on a wide spectrum of operations, allowing the crew to deliver calibrated responses using lethal and non-lethal options to deal with a range of maritime threats.
The LMVs are the RSN's newest ships and will replace the Fearless-class Patrol Vessels, which have been in service for around 20 years. All eight LMVs are expected to be fully operational by 2020. The first LMV Independence was launched on 3 July 2015 and is presently undergoing sea trials.
Also present at the ceremony were Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Senior Minister of State for Defence Dr Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral Lai Chung Han, and senior officials from the Ministry of Defence and the Singapore Armed Forces.