Chinese shipyards launched 9 destroyers in 2019

This is a figure which, in itself, allows us to understand the great geostrategic upheaval underway on the planet. Indeed, while simultaneously the 26th copy of the Type 26D destroyers and the 052th were launched this December 6 heavy destroyer Type 055, it appears that Chinese shipyards will have launched, in 2019 alone, no less than 9 destroyers, i.e. 2 Type 055 of more than 10.000 tonnes, and 7 Type 052D of more than 7000 tonnes. It is even possible that a 10th destroyer will be launched by the new year.

For comparison, the French Navy will ultimately only have 10 ships that can be qualified as “Destroyers”, even if they are identified as frigates in the national nomenclature, namely the 2 Horizon class air defense frigates. , the 6 FREMM anti-submarine frigates of the Aquitaine class, and the two frigates with enhanced air capacity FREMDA of the Alsace class. With a tonnage of only 4500 tonnes and 32 vertical silos, the 5 French IDF will be similar to the Chinese Type 054A/B frigates, and cannot be classified as destroyers.

Type 055 Defense News | Military Naval Construction | Surface fleet
China's Type 055 heavy destroyers can, in many ways, be classified as cruisers and not destroyers

But France is not the only one facing such a decline. The United States will have launched only one Arleigh Burke Flight IIA destroyer over the same period, the Daniel Inouye, Japan the second Maya class destroyer JS Aguro, Italy FREMM Spartacus Schergat and France FREMDA Alsace. In other words, the largest Western navies will have launched, over the same period, less than half the number of destroyers launched by Chinese shipyards.

Over the coming decade, the US Navy plans to launch, each year, 2 Arleigh Burke Flight IIA and Flight III destroyers, as well as 2 FFG/X frigates. Without the launch British, Canadian and Australian Type 26 frigates, and Japanese 30DX destroyers, representing a total of 3 launches per year, the Western dropout would be obvious. However, from 2020, Chinese shipyards will begin launching the new Type 054B frigates, possibly a new class of Type 056C corvette, and probably a new version of the Type 052D destroyer. The rate of production of combatant surface units should be established around 15 to 18 units per year, or as many as there will be “1st rank” frigates in the French Navy. In terms of surface combatants, China does not launch the equivalent of the National Navy in 4 years, as is often written... but in a single year. Enough to seriously challenge in the short term the control of the seas on which Western economic, political and military power has been based since the 16th century.

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