Taipei, Nov. 5 (CNA) By Elaine Hou
Taiwan will purchase two Oliver Hazard Perry-Class frigates from the United States in 2014, as part of its efforts to revive its aging fleet, a defense official confirmed Monday.
Defense Minister Kao Hua-chu said the decommissioned frigates will be purchased with key onboard equipment such as the SQR-19 Towed Array Sonar system, which allows long-range passive detection of enemy submarines.
"This (the equipment) is necessary," Kao said at a hearing in the Legislature's Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee.
Kao was responding to questions by Legislator Lin Yu-fang of the ruling Kuomintang on the issue of buying the two frigates from U.S. in 2014 at a cost of more than NT$7 billion (US$239.36 million).