Illustrative image (Source: indiandefensenews.in)

Bangkok (VNA) – Thailand will buy its first submarine from China in 2017, stated Deputy Premier Prawit Wongsuwan on July 1.

Speaking to the media, Gen Prawit said he has approved the Thai navy’s proposal to purchase three submarines from China.

According to him, the navy will use its fiscal 2017’s budget to buy the first sub next year, with two others to be bought over the next few years.

The cost of each sub amounts to approximately 340 million USD and will be paid by instalments spanning a ten-year period from next year.

The Thai navy first planned to buy submarines in 2008/09, but the intention was delayed until now.

In respond to a comment that shallow Thai waters are unsuitable for submarines, Prawit said submarines will help Thailand safeguard its rich marine resources.

All neighbouring countries have their own submarines, for example Myanmar owns ten, he said.-VNA