Ship Transfer Between U.S. and Bangladesh: USCGC Jarvis Now BNS Somudra Joy

— Domani Spero

A while back, we noted the First Hot Ship Transfer Between U.S. and Pakistan: USS McInerney Now PNS Alamgir in this blog. In May this year, the Coast Guard Cutter Jarvis, a 378-foot High Endurance Cutter homeported in Alameda, was decommissioned and transferred to the Bangladesh Navy as the BNS Somudra Joy during a ceremony on Coast Guard Island in Alameda, California.

On December 13, 2013, the ship finally arrived in Bangladesh. The US Embassy in Dhaka announced the formal ship transfer hosted by Ambassador Dan W. Mozena. Announcement below:

Photo via US Embassy Dhaka/FB

Photo via US Embassy Dhaka/FB

The newest member of the Bangladesh Navy ‘s fleet arrives at Chittagong port today, the BNS Somudra Joy. Formerly the United States Coast Guard Cutter Jarvis, the 378-foot high endurance cutter was commissioned in Hawaii in 1972 and is now the largest vessel in the Bangladesh Navy inventory. The ship was transferred to the Bangladesh Navy under the Excess Defense Articles program on 21 May 2013, and after an extensive program for training and new equipment installation in California, the 167-man crew has successfully conducted a six week transit of the Pacific Ocean. Responding to the disaster in the Philippines, the Bangladesh Navy was able to make use of the ship’s voyage to pick up over 40-tons of relief supplies and delivery them to Manila on November 30, 2013. The ship will be expected to provide the Bangladesh Navy many decades of reliable service in extending their nation’s interest and global security into the Bay of Bengal.

America is Bangladesh’s faithful partner in building the nation’s capacity to protect these maritime assets. The success of the partnership is evident as we see robberies in coastal waters and in port have dropped by over two-thirds; maritime insurance rates have dropped by a third; kidnapped fishermen in the western coastal area are now being successfully rescued. As Bangladesh strengthens its capacity to protect its maritime borders, everyone gains. America gains as Bangladesh is the second largest source of readymade garments for the U.S. and these products arrive by sea; the region gains as secure Bangladeshi waters make for a more secure Bay of Bengal; and, most especially, the people of Bangladesh gain as their lifeline to the world is secure.

BNS Somudro Joy will reportedly be heavily upgraded into a guided missile frigate. In June this year, the Defense Media Network highlighted the improvement in Bangladesh Navy combat power as it showcases modernized warship at LIMA, and noted that “the ship transfer marks an historic moment in U.S.-Bangladesh defense and security relations, as this is the first time such a large warship has been transferred from the United States.”

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