PARIS, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- Two light patrol boats have been ordered for the French Navy from shipbuilder Socarenam for use in sovereignty and protection missions in the Caribbean.
France's Ministry of Defense said the Guiana Light Patrol Boats would help guard the country's Guiana Space Center and also engage in counter-narcotics trafficking.
The PLGs will have a length of 196.8 feet, a beam of 31 feet and a draft of less than 10.5 feet to allow operations in shallow waters. The vessels will have maximum speed of 21 knots and an endurance time of 12 days when traveling at a speed of 12 knots.
Weaponry will be remote-controlled 20mm guns, the ministry said. A crew of 24 sailors will operate each patrol boat.
Delivery of the vessels is expected to take place at the end of 2016 and the summer of 2017.
The cost of the vessels ordered by the French military procurement agency was not detailed.