Japan’s Sasebo naval base to get refit to accommodate U.S. stealth destroyer


The U.S. Navy will revamp power facilities on a pier at Sasebo naval base in Nagasaki Prefecture to permit its new Zumwalt-class stealth destroyers to berth there, it was learned Thursday.

The Navy has set aside $16.42 million for the work in its fiscal 2017 draft budget.

While noting that a new type of the America-class amphibious assault ship will arrive at Sasebo in 2019, the budget document stresses the need for upgrades to the power grid on the pier for when the base becomes the home port for new warships, and the need to make repairs to them.

U.S. naval quays typically have massive power outlets into which a berthed ship plugs its systems before switching off its generators.

Construction is earmarked for between May 2017 and October 2018.

It is not known when a Zumwalt-class missile destroyer will arrive at Sasebo. The Navy is scheduled to receive the delivery of its second ship in the class in fiscal 2017. The first vessel will be home-ported in San Diego.

Meanwhile, the pier repairs at Sasebo appear to be in line with the U.S. military’s strategy of deploying its newest weapons in the Asia-Pacific region.

The Obama administration has spoken at length about an ongoing diplomatic, economic and military “pivot” to the region.