Algerian Corvette is in Town

Adhafer being assisted to her berth at BCC in October, last year. The rails on top of the bridge are only temporary safety measures.

SHAH ALAM: ALGERIAN Navy Type C28A corvette – the Adhafer – berthed at the Boustead Cruise Centre, in Port Klang today (Oct 6, 2015). Yes, its the same China-made boat that I reported was proposed to the Royal Malaysian Navy, earlier this year.

For more on the story go here. Whether or not the visit of Adhafer, which is on her way home to Algeria – has anything to do with a renewed effort to sell the vessel to RMN is beyond me.

Algerian Navy Adhafer corvette at berth at BCC today.
Algerian Navy Adhafer corvette at berth at BCC today.

According to a RMN release, Adhafer, will be in Malaysia until Oct 8 for replenishment, rest and recreation. As the ship has yet to be commissioned, she did not carry the Algerian Navy jack when she came to berth. A lot of rails were also in place all over the ship as part of the safety precautions prior to the commissioning.

A model of the Algerian Navy C28A corvette displayed at DSA
A model of the Algerian Navy C28A corvette displayed at DSA 2014.

Adhafer is fitted mostly with China made weapons from a 76mm gun to 6 C-820 active radar homing SSM. She is also fitted with a Thales SMARTS 3-D radar together with China made Type 364 air search radar. The Thales radar is the same one to be fitted on-board RMN’s six LCS frigates.

Adhafer being assisted to her berth at BCC. The rails on top of the bridge are only temporary safety measures.
Adhafer being assisted to her berth at BCC. The rails on top of the bridge are only temporary safety measures.

Most interestingly, Adhafer is fitted with four MTU diesel engines which afforded the 120-metre corvette with a top speed of 27 knots. The corvette which is commanded by Lt Colonel Ali Yahi, has a crew of 120. For her maiden voyage home, 20 personnel from the Hudong=Zhonghua Shipbuilding yard are also on board.

Adhafer being positioned for her berth at BCC.
Adhafer being positioned for her berth at BCC.

The same shipyard is also building another two corvettes for Algeria with both expected to be delivered next year and 2017, respectively.

— Malaysian Defence.

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About Marhalim Abas 2223 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Most of the specification of the ship is known from open sources. Only one important information is missing…

    How much does it cost for one of those ships? If anyone able to ask about that it would be great.

    Its unlikely it will be announced.

  2. By the way that algerian “corvette” is actually bigger than our lekiu class frigates and as big as our future gowind frigates

    DCNS described the Gowinds as corvettes.

  3. Ship’s looks nice. Just use western equipments and its quite potent in my eyes. Not sure bout the others complicated stuff though. But if it can use thales smart-s mk 2 radar, then……

  4. A frigate size corvette. What is the major factor to look at when categorizing these ships? Not by tonnage I guess. Look neat and clean, no “ripples” on the surface like some other ships I have seen.

  5. If im not mistaken that ship is the 1st warship built in China to western Lloyd standards.

  6. Depends entirely on the user, if it wants to designate a ship a ‘frigate”, “light frigate’ or “corvette”. Displacement off course determines how a ship is designated but also it’s role.

  7. I heard that Chinese made warships are so noisy that they are sitting ducks for submarines. Any sonar would pick up the noise. If its tru, M’sia shouldn’t even think of buying Chinese, no matter how cheap it is.

    The old one maybe but the new vessels like the Adhafer should be better as the shipyard start building more and more ships.

  8. The chinese has built special air warfare destroyers. Effecti e too apparently except that its weapons n systems are still not yested but they have more guns n anti air missiles, anti sub missiles, close in weapon systems torps too.
    On another matter, Morocco is buying 120 m1a1 abrams . These are refurbished u its but all zero houred through the refurbishment. It cosr about US$340 million or about rm1 bil.

  9. misteri ….
    C28A is design by third party company suspect fr Europe, propulsion systemis design by MTU, than pass to china to construction, china only do they system/weapon, this ship is china first time construct side exhaust navy ship.

  10. Misteri,

    The Chinese shipbuilding industry has progressed over the past 2 decades. It’s no longer a case of Chinese yards churning out ships with poor build quality and atrocious D/C standards. The South Koreans went through the same process and look at them now.

  11. Usd 160mil each?

    That is value for money, considering even our kedah opv’s cost usd 300mil each.

  12. A major problem the Chinese have faced is engines. Naval ships have relied a lot on Ukranian engines; fighters on Russian ones. Like other yards worldwide, the end product of a Chinese yard is determined by how much the end user is willing to pay. If the end user desires high grade steel, stringent D/C standards, a modern design and other stuff, then he has to pay for it.

    It’s not the ability of a Chinese yard to deliver a product that is equal in quality, when compared to a product made in Western yard that comes into question but the matter of how much the end user is willing to pay. If the end user had a limited budget, even a Western shipyard would produce a ship based on an existing design, average steel and minimal D/C.

    Personally, I’d rather have a ship made in a European yard but that’s me being prejudiced as Chinese yards have come a long way and it’s not the 1980’s or 1990’s anymore. The days when Chinese yards made ships such as the RTN’s Chao Praya class (low grade steel, poor D/C, poor noise and shock controls, no redundancy, no CMS, badly designed crew quarters, etc) are over.

  13. For usd 160 mil a pop it would be a bargain if we could buy such ships. But u know the Malaysian way.. Must TOT (hasil tot tak tau g mana). Got to be built in Malaysia, Must have this and that. All and all it will cost more then buying directly from the chinese. I agree with Azlan statement. Given the choice i would rather have a western or european solution but the chinese is not that far back regarding technology and build quality. If u want more then just pay more la. But make sure berbaloi la bro…

  14. If the ship suits the navy’s mission, then it’s the right ship, I always say.

    Algeria has a coastline and EEZ to protect. This ship suits the Algerian Navy’s requirements, so fine. No need to run down another navy’s choice of ship.

    Even if it’s an old boat, if it carries the right equipment, it’s a threat. Ask the US 5th Fleet about Iran’s 30 yr-old anti-ship missile equipped patrol boats.

  15. China’s shipbuilding industry is very different from even ten years ago. They build ships for a global market to a global standard and a lot of them have MTU engines so its not a big deal. But steel is cheap. The expensive part is the sensors, systems, weapons and so on. So if we insist on western weapons/systems the savings from ordering from china isn’t that much.

  16. In the 1980’s when South Korea was looking at exporting ships and when we had Mahawangsa and Marikh made in Pusan; people said the same thing about Korean yards they’re now saying about Chinese yards. At the end of the day it’s about gaya and prestige : nicer to say one’s ship was designed by BAE Systems rather than the Hudong Zhonghua yard…. Nicer to say that one’s ship was built by a yard that makes for the Royal Navy, rather than a yard that makes for the People’s Liberation Army Navy….

    We tend to forget that the build quality and ability of Chinese export ships are based not on limitations of Chinese yards but how much the end user is willing to pay and what they specify goes on their ship. Also, people like to assume that Western yards always make superior ships but in recent times there have been Western yards that make ships and subs that have quality issues.

  17. Chinese yards produce both new and old designs.

    The C28A is an upgrade of a very old design and it will come with some of the design problems mentioned above. Compared to a newer or Western design.

    You get what you pay for.

  18. The perfect solution in an ideal world would be to custom design a ship to meets ones specific requirements. Unfortunately this option is only available to a handful of navies; the rest – like us – have to settle on existing designs and tweek as far finances and technical issues permit.

    Despite issues such as the low bow which made it tricky in certain sea conditions, having to remove the MM-38s to gain access to the engine, fire control issues with the Emerlecs that were never satisfactorily resolved; the RMN was quite happy with the Kasturi class. It all boils down to the fact that navies rarely get a “perfect” design. There will be trade offs and design ‘A’ from the 2000’s will be overall better than design “B” from the 1980’s but design “A’ in certain areas.

    With the exception of the FACs, the subs, survey boats and FTVs; as well as the retired Vosper built PCs and the Marikh class; I’ve had the privilege of boarding every class in the RMN (not on Open Days or during exhibitions). It’s very interesting to see up close the differences in design philosophy of various ships made by different yards and to get feedback by those who operate them.

  19. Nimitz,

    No. Never went aboard the Banggi and Jarom and never on the Rahmat and Inderapura.

    From what I’ve been told the Banggi and Jarom could get very uncomfortable to be in due to the shallow draft and were very noisy. There is a serving Commander whose dad was a former CO one of the LSTs.

  20. Azlan, since you had been on almost all “capital” vsl of RMN, in your opinion, what vsl standard@certification is best suited for us? NATO? UK?

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