25 Januari 2016
Six decommissioned South Korean Navy ships, pictured at Jinhae naval base. From left to right, four Chamsuri patrol boats, the Po Hang-class corvette ROKS Kim Chon, and the Ulsan-class light frigate ROKS Seoul. Philippine Navy set to receive Mokpo (PCC 759) (photo : RoK MoD)
The Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN) has decommissioned six ships, comprising a light frigate, a corvette, and four Chamsuri fast attack patrol boats. The decommissionings took place on 31 December 2015 at Jinhae naval base.
ROKS Seoul (FFG 952), a 102 m, 1,500-tonne Ulsan-class light frigate, was withdrawn after 34 years of service. According to an ROKN statement, Seoul - which was assigned to the ROKN's Third Fleet Command when in service - is scheduled for use as a platform for security education.
The Ulsan class entered service from 1981 onwards, as part of an programme to build indigenous ships, and served as the navy's primary surface ships until the KDX-series destroyers began entering service in the late 1990s. Seven Ulsan frigates remain in service.
The navy also decommissioned the 88 m, 1200-tonne Po Hang-class corvette Kim Chon (PCC 761). The ship, which entered service in 1986, may be used as a training platform or could be transferred to another navy, according to the ROKN statement. Eighteen of the 24 ships-in-class remain in service.
Two of the already-decommissioned corvettes have been transferred to other navies, with the Philippine Navy set to receive Mokpo (PCC 759), while the Peruvian Navy received Kyong Ju (PCC 758) - since renamed BAP Ferré - in October 2015.
The four decommissioned Chamsuri patrol boats - 283, 285, 288, and 291 - appear to be 33 m, 147-tonne variants. The future of the four boats is unclear, although a number of similar hulls have been transferred to other navies after decommissioning. More than 60 of the class remain in service.