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Navy of Uruguay takes delivery of three US Protector-Class patrol vessels.

| 2021

According to information published by the U.S. Embassy in Uruguay, On December 15, 2021, Admiral Jorge Wilson, Commander of the Uruguayan Navy, signed a Letter of Acceptance (LOA) finalizing the government-to-government agreement between the United States and Uruguay, allowing Uruguay to accept three Protector-Class patrol vessels as part of a grant from the United States Coast Guard as part of the Uruguayan Navy’s Fleet Modernization plan.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Navy of Uruguay to accept three Protector Class vessels as part of a grant from the United States Coast Guard as part of the Uruguayan Navy’s Fleet Modernization plan (Picture source U.S. Embassy of Uruguay)

The three vessels, USCG Cutters Albacore (WPB-87309), Cochito (WPD-87329), and Gannet (WPB-87334), were all commissioned between 1999 and 2009. The original cost of the vessels was US$14,361,000 and the current estimated value is US$ 8,685,000.

Uruguay will receive the vessels themselves as a no-cost grant but, in accordance with U.S. law, will be responsible for paying US$ 4,986,296 for the vessels’ refurbishment, and for training for Uruguayan Navy personnel to employ the ships.

The 87-foot (27 m) Protector Class vessels have a 900 NM (1,700 KM) range, a top speed of 25 knots, and served in the United States on missions including homeland security, combating drug smuggling, immigration enforcement, marine fisheries enforcement and search and rescue support. The ships are designed to accommodate crews of mixed gender with five separate small berthing spaces and maximum berthing for 12. Each ship will include a rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB) that can be launched from the stern of the larger vessel via an innovative launch and recovery system. This capability allows for crews to quickly intercept, inspect and/or board other vessels while on patrol without stopping. The three specific vessels that Uruguay will receive, now decommissioned by the U.S. Coast Guard, were homeported in Connecticut, Virginia, and Florida.

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