Local media in Bangladesh have reported that Bangladesh will buy five naval ships from the UK as part of an effort to modernise their armed forces.
The deal was reportedly made at a bilateral meeting between Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on the side lines of the COP26 conference in Glasgow on Wednesday.
We are currently seeking information on the type of ships being purchased, we’ll update this article when we get it. It is likely that Bangladesh will be buying British vessels as they retire, most likely minehunters.
The Daily Star of Bangladesh reports here that:
“We have decided in principle to buy five naval ships. The objectives of this purchase is to monitor and protect our huge sea frontiers from others who enter our territories for fishing or other purposes,” they quoted Bangladeshi Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momenas saying.
“The negotiation went on for a long time. This time, we agreed in principle to buy five naval ships. Three of those will be imported from the UK and the two others will be built in our dockyard in Chattogram.”
Since 2009, Bangladesh has greatly increased military purchases and capabilities. In 2009, Bangladesh introduced “Forces Goal 2030”, which called for a massive expansion and modernisation of the Bangladesh Army, Navy, and Air Force.
The long-term goal is to build a “three-dimensional force capable of conducting multi-platform warfare”. You can read more about this effort at The Diplomat here.
HMS Kent, a frigate part of HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Carrier Strike Group, was recently welcomed by the Bangladesh Navy whilst visiting the nation. According to the Ministry of Defence here, on the morning of 14 October, type 23 frigate HMS Kent of the UK’s Carrier Strike Group deployment (CSG21) sailed to Bangladesh, arriving at the naval base in Chattogram.
“The visit will celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence and highlight the historic bilateral defence connections and people-to people relationships between the UK and Bangladesh. This year, with the spirit of Brit Bangla Bondhon, the UK is demonstrating the depth and significance of UK-Bangla ties through its commitment to engage more with Bangladesh as a partner of sustainable peace and growth.
The deployment of HMS Kent, as part of the Carrier Strike Group, highlights the UK’s commitment to defence cooperation and to an open and resilient international order in which open societies and economies continue to flourish and the benefits of prosperity are shared through trade and global growth. During the visit, HMS Kent will engage in a series of events with the Bangladesh Navy and the local administration in Chattogram to maximise bilateral relations benefitting both countries’ military, trade and political alliances.”