Life in Japan depends on keeping a sea routes free of threats and always open to its maritime traffic, one of the largest in the world, and for this task it has a powerful Navy with the “self-defense” as its main motto. In 1999 there was an unpleasant incident that served to be aware that they did not have effective ships for low profile threats and therefore it was decided to build 6 guided missiles patrol boats of the Hayabusa class. The ships of 240 tons have a powerful anti-ship armament and powerful engines that allow speeds of up to 44 knots. They are destined to patrol Japanese territorial waters and to be a quick response to limited naval threats without having to resort to large ships that politically can be seen badly and cause an escalation of tension. The Hayabusa class entered service between 2002 and 2004.
HAYABUSA class gallery and more info