The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (Japanese: 海上自衛隊, Hepburn: Kaijō Jieitai, abbreviated JMSDF), also simply known as the Japanese Navy, is the maritime warfare branch of the Japan Self-Defense Forces, tasked with the naval defense of Japan. The JMSDF has a fleet of 154 ships and 346 aircraft and consists of approximately 45,800 personnel. Its main tasks are to maintain control of the nation’s sea lanes and to patrol territorial waters. It also participates in UN-led peacekeeping operations (PKOs) and Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIOs).
Since 2000, the JMSDF has been the world’s fourth-largest navy by total tonnage.
The list of active ships of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force is a list of ships in active service with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. The JMSDF is one of the world’s largest navies and the second largest navy in Asia in terms of fleet tonnage. As of 2016, the JMSDF operates a total of 155 vessels (including minor auxiliary vessels), including; four helicopter destroyers (or helicopter carriers), 26 destroyers, 10 small destroyers (or frigates), six destroyer escorts (or corvettes), 22 attack submarines, 30 mine countermeasure vessels, six patrol vessels, three landing ship tanks, 8 training vessels and a fleet of various auxiliary ships.
As of 2013, a procurement list added to the current National Defense Program Guidelines (NDPG) has revealed that, among other things, an additional 48 escort vessels of various classes are planned to be added to the MSDF fleet in the coming decade.
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