Argentine Navy’s new OPV ARA Bouchard finally arrives homeport

ARA Bouchard berthing the pier of Mar del Plata

After cruising 6,800 nautical miles from Toulon, Argentine Navy’s new Oceanic Patrol Vessel (OPV) named ARA Bouchard (pennant number P-51) arrived Mar del Plata Naval Base on 11st February, which will be the homeport of the “newest member” of Armada Argentina.

The Minister of Defense (MoD) of Argentina accompanied by the Chief of the General Staff of the Navy, naval authorities of Armada Argentina, special guests and families of the crew attended the ceremony in honor of the arrival of the ship.

“In addition to the capabilities that we will enhance with this decision, we also intended to strengthen the self-esteem of the institution.” MoD said after the event.

Being the first vessel of the four of this type that the Argentine will procure, MoD emphasized: “We are happy because the equipment additions to the Armed Forces is always welcomed, especially for the Argentine Navy that has suffered from the tragedy of the ARA San Juan” he remarked.

“The best way to honor our ex-combatants and the 44 submariners (who lost their lives at ARA San Juan) is to have a Navy that has strength, that has the necessary equipment to deploy the missions that the constitution mandates.” said the minister.

ARA Bouchard is expected to contribute the naval presence of the Armada Argentina with the surveillance and control of maritime spaces, the protection and control of renewable and non-renewable natural resources, search and rescue operations and humanitarian support.