PT PAL Indonesia held a keel laying ceremony for the 1st Red and White Frigate (Arrowhead 140 Class) construction project August 25 in Surabaya. Secretary of the Defense Facilities Agency (Sesbaranahan) of the Indonesian Ministry of Defense, Brigadier General Heru Sudarminto led the ceremony. Also accompanying the Deputy Assistant for Logistics (Waaslog) Laksma TNI Maman Rohman and stakeholders from the Ministry of Defense and Navy Headquarters. This event marked the progress of the construction of the first flagship warship in history that was able to be built by the Indonesian nation.

Through his remarks, Chief Operating Officer (COO) PT PAL Indonesia Iqbal Fikri said that “The entrustment of PAL as a national defense industry in building 2 units of frigates, is the government’s commitment through the Indonesian Ministry of Defense to advance and increase the capacity and capability of the domestic defense industry. As well as a concrete step in an effort to realize an increase in defense technology mastery, defense industry independence, so as to minimize dependence on defense equipment imports,” he said.

In an effort to realize Golden Indonesia in 2045 as a country that is increasingly reckoned with in the global arena and has a defense capability that is daunted in the ASEAN region. This ideal is supported by optimizing the capacity and capability of the national defense industry, especially in the mastery of defense technology by the nation’s children.

The keel laying stage marked by laying the keel of the ship is an important moment as the beginning of calculating the age of the ship. The 1st Red and White Frigate has a length of 140 meters with a displacement of 5,996 tons, and will later be equipped with more modern sensing technology and weaponry. Especially as a high-tech product, of course, it cannot be separated from the development process and adjusting mechanism according to user needs.

Brigadier General Heru Sudarminto through his speech said “The construction of the frigate at PT PAL Indonesia is a form of fostering the domestic defense industry with the aim of improving the ability and expertise to build similar KRI in the future,” he explained representing the TNI Rear Marshal Yusuf Jauhari as Head of the Defense Facilities Agency (Kabaranahan).

Sesbaranahan Kemhan RI also explained the hope that the keel laying procession would be a good start for the continuation of the construction of frigates. “This is in line with government programs that want to create a superior domestic industry to advance Indonesia and be able to compete in the international shipping industry,” concluded Brigadier General of the TNI Heru Sudarminto.

The agenda began with the placement of coins bearing the identity of the ship, at the bottom of the hull by Brigadier General Heru Sudarminto as a representative of the ship’s owner. The inauguration of the keel laying ceremony was marked by pressing the button jointly by COO PAL Iqbal Fikri, Sesbaranahan Brigadier General Heru Sudarminto, Dansatgas Frigate Laksma TNI Taat Siswo Sunarto, and Head of Frigate Project PT PAL Indonesia Bambang Djunaedi.

As is known, the design stage on warships is the most crucial phase in pre-production. So considering that the 1st Red and White Frigate is a high-tech warship built by Indonesia, Lloyd’s Register (LR) Class as an international classification agency has stated Indonesia’s readiness to carry out production according to the design proposed by PAL Indonesia.

On the occasion, Irfani Fahmi as SEA Client Relations Manager and Chief of Representative LR Class Indonesia also expressed his appreciation to the Indonesian people that “PT PAL Indonesia should be proud, because this is the first ship built with naval rules carried out by Indonesia. This becomes a good opportunity to learn more. This ship is different from ordinary warships, because this ship is designed to be more robust (or) stronger,” he explained.