PLAN's 50th Type 056 Corvette 'Wuzhou' Launched by Shipyard in Southern China

What is likely the fiftieth Type 056 Corvette (Jiangdao class) for the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN or Chinese Navy) was launched in early August. The vessel to be named Wuzhou (梧州) with hull number 626 was built and launched by the Huangpu Wenchong Shipyard of the Chinese naval group CSSC.

PLANs 50th Type 056 Corvette Wuzhou Launched by Shipyard in Southern China 1 The 50th Type 056 Corvette for the PLAN. It is the 15th of the class launched by the shipyard, located in Guangzhou in Southern China. Picture: 旅洋lll

Once again, the pace of China's naval shipbuilding industry is impressive: In just six years, 50 modern Type 056 surface combattants (and counting) have been launched. That's a little over 8 vessels launched per year on average!

Our colleagues from East Pendulum explain that the Type 056 is clearly the backbone of the PLAN. 42, then gradually increased to 64, this is the number of Type 056 corvettes ordered by the Chinese Navy so far. The lead ship of the class was launched on May 23, 2012 - The latests to date, 'Wuzhou' is the 15th building built by Huangpu shipyard located in Guangzhou in Southern China. Yet another Type 056 might have already followed: The 10th hull might have been launched by by Wuchang shipyard in Wuhan in Central China. The problem is official communications are scarce these days making it very difficult to keep track of the Type 056 programme.

Assuming that the Chinese shipyards keep the same pace to build and fit out future Type 056, their construction should end in a year or a year and a half, ie towards the end of 2019. With a unit price of around 100 million dollars, the Type 056 program is one of many examples illustrating the desire and ambition of the China to become a hybrid power, both continental and oceanic.

PLANs 50th Type 056 Corvette Wuzhou Launched by Shipyard in Southern China 2 The vessel will be named Wuzhou (梧州) with hull number 626

According to a Chinese MOD statement, Type 056 Corvettes are new-generation light guided missile frigates independently developed by China. It has a length of 89 meters, a beam of 11 meters and a full-load displacement of 1,500 tons.

The warship, independently developed, designed and constructed by China, is equipped with a variety of weapons and equipment, and is featured by good stealth performance, strong compatibility, and a wide range of applications of advanced technologies.

After commissioned to the PLAN, the warship will perform such missions as patrolling, alert, fishery protection, escort, antisubmarine operation and anti-surface operation.

The Type 056A ASW variant features a towed array, dedicated ASW console and might be fitted with a new ASROC type system.
Export variant have been selected by the navies of Bangladesh (four units) and Nigeria (two units).

Link to Type 056 Corvette (Jiangdao class) datasheet.

Class # in class Hull # Name Type Displacement (tons) Launch date
Type 071 6     LPD 25,000 2018/01/20
 Type 815A  8      SIGINT 6,000 2018/02/03
unknown (tug) 4     Tug 6,000  2018/02
 Type 056A  45    Bazhong  ASW Corvette 1,340  2018/03/02
 Type 056A  46     ASW Corvette  1,340  2018/03/17
 Type 927 2     Acoustic Surveillance  5,000  2018/03
 Type 927  3     Acoustic Surveillance  5,000  2018/04
 Type 056A 47     ASW Corvette  1,340  2018/04/25
 Type 056A  48     ASW Corvette  1,340  2018/04/29
 Type 055 2     Destroyer  12,000   2018/04/29
 Type 910  4     Test ship  6,000 (TBC)  2018/04/30
 Type 056A  49      ASW Corvette 1,340  2018/05/16
 Type 056A  50 (TBC)      ASW Corvette 1,340  2018/05/16
 Type 054A  30  542   Frigate 4,000  2018/06/30
 Type 055  3     Destroyer  12,000  2018/07/03
 Type 055  4      Destroyer  12,000   2018/07/03
 Type 052D  14      Destroyer  6,000+  2018/07/07
 Type 056A  51 (TBC)  626 Wuzhou ASW Corvette  1,340  2018/08


with information from East Pendulum

PLAN launches so far this year
Since January 1, 2018, the Chinese naval industry has already launched no less than 19 new surface ships for the Chinese navy, 3 more than last year while there are still 4 months to go before year end.

But looking at tonnage, the 19 ships launched this year represent only about 57% in terms of the displacement of the 16 vessels launched in 2017. This is explained by the fact that an aircraft carrier, a large tanker (more than 40,000 tons) and a 20,000 tons LPD were launched in 2017. This year, apart from the 3 Type 055 destroyers (12,000 tons each), only smaller size vessels were launched: 8 Type 056 corvettes.