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Sri Lanka Navy sold Nine patrol craft to Nigeria

Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) exported nine homemade patrol craft worth about US$ 4.2 million to Nigeria for the first time in history according to SLN Media Unit.

Winning one of the biggest defence contracts in Sri Lanka's naval history, the Navy sold six Arrow Boats and three Inshore Patrol Craft, built by the Inshore Patrol Craft Project of the Navy established at Welisara, to Nigeria on Friday (6).
SLN media unit told Ceylon Today that the deal is a milestone in the annals of the Navy as it is the first transaction, where the Navy was involved internationally to earn foreign exchange to the country.

The Nigerian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka S.U. Ahmed along with the dignitaries of the High Commission, the Director General Operation of the Sri Lanka Navy, Rear Admiral Dharmendra Wettewa and the Director General Engineering, Rear Admiral Nilantha Premasiri attended the historic occasion which saw the official handing over of the vessels at its premises.

"Sri Lanka Navy is the pioneer in the sphere of Arrow-class patrol boats and Wave Rider Craft which were developed through SLN's Asymmetric Naval Warfare experience. Moreover the foreign navies and the sister services avidly seek the assistance of the Sri Lanka Navy in asymmetric warfare exercises/ training due to its world-wide fame achieved through the victories in sea battles through these Arrow-class patrol boats and Wave Riders," added the SLN.

Furthermore, they said, "The first prototypes of the Arrow boats were developed in 1994 by the Navy Special Boat Squadron (SBS) and have indigenously produced about 120 craft so far.

The fast small boat, armed with an autocannon or automatic grenade launcher as its primary weapon system and with multiple machine guns, is capable of achieving high speeds and is highly manoeuvreable, meeting the requirements of these units in small boat operations." The assignment will continue ahead as it would boost the economic stabilization of the country through export earnings. The earnings of USD 4.2 million will be utilized for the upgrading of the Inshore Patrol Craft Project of the Navy at Welisara.