April 7, 2011: An American Perry class frigate is now on its way to Pakistan, after being refurbished and manned by 240 Pakistani sailors. After 30 years service in the U.S. Navy, the USS McInerney was retired, then underwent $69 million of refurbishment before entering Pakistani service. The refurb included the addition of more anti-submarine capabilities.
The Perry's are 4,100 ton ships that have a crew of 220 and are armed with a 76mm gun, six tubes for launching Mk 46 anti-submarine torpedoes, and a 20mm auto cannon as anti-missile defense. As built, the Perry's had a missile launcher for SM-1 anti-aircraft or Harpoon anti-ship missiles (from a 40 missile magazine), but these were removed from all U.S. Perrys in 2004. This was done because U.S. allies needed the dwindling supply of SM-1 missiles more than U.S. ships did. The two SH-60 helicopters carried by the Perrys could still use their smaller Penguin anti-ship missiles.
The Perrys have air search radar and sonar, and a top speed of 55 kilometers an hour. If built today, the Perry's would cost about $300 million each. Pakistan plans to use its Perry class frigate for the anti-piracy patrol off Somalia. But the enhanced anti-submarine capabilities indicate service against Indian subs as well.