Contracts Day, LIMA 2019

LANGKAWI: Contracts Day, LIMA 2019. Seven contracts, ten letter of awards (LOA) and eight letter of intents (LOI) worth RM3.655 billion were signed at LIMA 2019 today.

As reported earlier today, there was no contract for the MICA SAM.

RMAF Hercules M30-08 landing at Labuang in late November, 2017

Even though the total amount of the deals, looks big, it is actually misleading as most of them had been announced before like the Starstreak, NSM, submarine ISS and the 105LG gun from Nexter. Its the normal, for a lack of a better word, the LIMA shuffle.

Two RMAF F/A-18D flying over KD Tun Razak in 2017. RMAF.

Others include spares and maintenance support of various ships, aircraft and equipment of the RMN and RMAF.

M46-02 VIP Blackhawk. Although crewed by RMAF personnel, their tasking come under the PMO. Malaysian Defence

The only thing that stood out was an LOA to a Serbian company, Glotec Ltd Serbia, for the MRO of the MB-339CM Viper 632-43 turbo jet engines.

RMAF MB-339CM M34-20 in a picture taken at the Cope Taufan in 2014 at Butterworth.

The announcement did not say how many engines will be overhauled though based on the contract amount of RM40.8 million, it may well be the whole complement of Vipers still in service. It is also unclear where the work will take place as the company website says it was established in 1989 in Singapore, Serbia and Montenegro.

One of the MB-339CM getting ready for a test flight in 2008 prior to delivery to RMAF.

I have no idea how many of the Viper engines are in service as they were taken out of the A’s for the MB-339CMs.

One of the Pulatibang 3 MB-339CM seen at the Kuantan airbase on June 1, 2015.

The Viper engines were overhauled by AVIO of Italy before they were installed, inexplicably, on the CM.

An MB-339CM and a MIG-29N Fulcrum demonstrates the interception at the NCO demonstration ceremony at Kuantan airbase in May, 2016. This was the last time Malaysian Defence saw a Fulcrum flying.

Some 10 years after the CM’s service, the flying rates, I am told is dismal due to the difficulties in getting parts for the engines. We originally got eight CM but one crashed in 2016, leaving only seven air frames available.

M-346FA with the weapons intended to arm it.

Leonardo, the Italian defence group which Aermacchi now belongs to, has a standing offer for RMAF to sell back the 339CM for the M-346 trainer. It has now been upgraded to the M-346FA, its entry for the LCA project.

— Malaysian Defence

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