Explosive Expansion of China Coast Guard

Informationdissemination has a post on China’s shipbuilding program for cutters for their recently consolidated Coast Guard. The build rate is amazing.

…36 cutters of 1500 ton, 1000 ton and 600 ton class were built for various provincial flotilla of CMS. Much of the building and launching activities happened in 2013 and 2014.

…2 12,000 ton cutters…, 4 5000 ton cutters…, 4 4000 ton cutters…and 10 more 3000 ton cutters…

…all the newer large cutters for various arms of the consolidated Coast Guard are installed with naval gun.

Of the 2 smaller agencies that consolidated, HaiGuan (Chinese customs) had an order for 3 1500-ton class cutter with electric propulsion and 9 600 ton class cutters.

The new consolidated Coast guard agency have since started new programs. A year ago, they started projects for Type 818 patrol vessels (3000 ton class) and Type 718 cutters (2000 ton class), HP shipyard signed for 4 of the Type 818 and 5 of Type 718.

Reportedly the China Coast Guard already has 80 cutters of 1000 tons or more, twice the number in the USCG and it looks like it is still growing. Two of them will be the largest Offshore Patrol Vessels in the world.

The decision to arm all their larger cutter with Naval guns means they will have many more ships capable of performing Naval Surface Fire Support (NSFS). It also means the kind of shoving matches we have seen between China’s ships and those of other nations are potentially more dangerous.

Japanese Coast Guard at Center of Sino-Japanese Dispute

Japan, China, and Taiwan are in a dispute over islands that convey ownership of potentially oil and gas rich offshore areas. The Japanese Coast Guard finds itself in the middle of the dispute. In the latest move it looks as if the Chinese may be moving drilling equipment into the disputed area. This is on the heals of apparently more aggressive fisheries enforcement by the Japanese Coast Guard that resulted in two Japanese cutters being rammed and a Chinese vessel seized with its captain still being held for prosecution. Some additional background here.