The Croatian Navy has introduced a prototype inshore patrol vessel into operational service during a ceremony held at the ‘Fleet Admiral Sveto Letica – Barba’ barracks in Split.

Named Omis, the ship manufactured by Brodosplit is the first of the five planned inshore patrol vessels to be acquired by the Croatian Navy. It is also the first vessel to be designed and constructed in contemporary Croatia.

Prior to its hand over, the vessel was put through extensive tests to get an insight into all its on-board systems.

Croatian Defence Minister Damir Krstičević said: “The Croatian industry, supported by the Ministry of Defence, can further upgrade the capabilities of the Croatian Armed Forces, the complex systems such as large ships included.”

“The vessel was put through extensive tests to get an insight into all its on-board systems.”

He added: “The establishment of naval infantry company, the return of a Croatian Armed Forces unit to Ploce, the launching of the naval studies, the procurement of the engine for the missile boat and the delivery of ring a rocket launcher engine and delivering a coastal patrol boat, we return to the Croatian Navy the victorious glow it had during the Homeland War.”

Following the takeover, the vessel will now undergo a five-month second testing phase to verify whether it can meet the tactical and technical requirements.

The 43.25m long vessel features a 30mm automatic gun, two manually operable 12.7mm machine guns, and four portable air defence rocket systems.

The new inshore patrol vessel will be deployed by the navy in support of tasks carried out by Croatia’s Coast Guard.

It will be used for patrol missions to safeguard and control Croatia’s interests at sea, search-and-rescue operations, in addition to protecting internal waters during a war and provide combat and logistic support.