Down to Typhoon or Rafale

RAF Eurofighter Typhoon. Crown Copyright

SHAH ALAM: Its down to either Typhoon or Rafale. Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein seemed to confirm that the race for the next RMAF fighter is between either the Eurofighter Typhoon or the Dassault Rafale. I am reporting that he seemed to confirm as he did not quite exactly say “Its either Typhoon or Rafale” but as usual, he say it in a much non-definitive way.

It was non-definitive that the reporter who was present at the press conference at the Parliament yesterday had to carefully explained what the minister had said. If I was there, I would have asked Hishammuddin to say it outright. But even then, from past experience, it is likely the minister will try to avoid giving a definitive answer.

For the full story go here

RAF Typhoons Air to Air refuelling en-route to Malaysia for Exercise Bersama Lima 16. Crown Copyright
RAF Typhoons Air to Air refuelling en-route to Malaysia for Exercise Bersama Lima 16. Crown Copyright

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 20): Minister of Defence Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein reiterated that Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF)’s order for new multi role combat aircrafts (MRCAs) will have to depend on the state of the country’s economy.

In a press conference at the Parliament lobby today, Hishammuddin explained that the choice of vendor for this procurement will depend on the affordability of the package offered, and the technical suitability. This purchase is widely seen as a move to replace RMAF’s Russian Mikoyan MiG-29 fighters, which have been in service since the 1990s.

Dassault has delivered 3 Rafales to Egypt. Dassault
Dassault has delivered 3 Rafales to Egypt. Dassault

“By the year 2020 we have to make a decision on the [purchase of the] MRCAs. It’s an open secret that we are looking at either the [Dassault] Rafale, or the [BAE Systems’] Typhoon from the UK, but we don’t have to make the decision now. What we need to do is look at the affordability, and that depends on [the state of] our economy,” he said

Hishammuddin also explained in the same press conference why Typhoon and Rafale were the final candidates.

“There are other reasons why we did not look at the [latest] Sukhois, [Boeing F/A-18] Hornets and the Gripen, which is a Swedish plane, but the most important [factor] is that whatever we do, we must be able to explain to the public,” Hishammuddin said.

RAF ground crew getting ready the Typhoons for flight. Crown Copyright
RAF ground crew getting ready the Typhoons for flight. Crown Copyright

So will it be Typhoon or Rafale then? Most likely but as I had written before the Super Hornet was still in the mix. Why is it then? Most likely as a fall back choice in case they got log-jammed in the final hurdle. Probably that was the reason, the minister refused to say it outright yesterday, so he has room to maneuver in the future in case they could not work out the deal with either Typhoon or Rafale.

RAF Typhoon from 1(Fighter) Sqn taking part in Bersama Lima 16. Crown Copyright.
RAF Typhoon from 1(Fighter) Sqn taking part in Bersama Lima 16. Crown Copyright.

As for when the decision will be made, even Hishammuddin was unable to answer it firmly – vague by 2020 answer – so it is unlikely that it will be announced at the presentation of the 2017 Budget later today.

I was told of the criteria for the green-light of the decision but that will have to wait for another day!

— Malaysian Defence

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Shah Alam

46 Comments

  1. Dassault Rafale has lack of nuclear capability while Eurofighter Typhoon does have nuclear capability. Which gon— ohh wait…. we don’t have a nuclear weapon at all. Silly me.

    Reply
    Both have nuclear capability, but only the Rafale is/will be nuclear armed.

  2. How do you explain it to the public? By 2020 Malaysia would probably be the last buyer of the Typhoon or the Rafale. A 12 aircraft buy of either the rafale or the typhoon would cost at least usd3billion (RM12billion). Imagine 1 MRCA costs as much as half of the gowind SGPV LCS.

    Another question is how is the say 12 MRCA is a better addition to malaysian defence and security rather than spending the same amount on more maritime patrol (MPA), airborne early warning (AEW&C), long endurance UAV, new low cost fighters?

    How would you guys spend USD3 billion for the airforce instead of buying 12 typhoon or rafale?

  3. Indirectly RMAF accept both fighter jet n eait MINDEF & ministry of Finance to choose…
    Indirectly SU-30mkm fail to make RMAF to get 2nd batch or even we had to say bye bye in one day…
    Indirectly we had alliances or partner to share n help to maintain either of the jet, India or Saudi Arabia

  4. I don’t intend to be rude, but if only can buy 8-10 aircraft, why bother?

    Reply
    The stated requirement is 18, that’s the reason every one got their knickers twisted

  5. Yes the stated requirement is 18, but if you want 18 of Typhoons or Rafales, you need to set aside at least USD5 billion (RM20 billion) to get those types of numbers. Can we afford to spend USD5 billion (if we could set aside that amount of money in the first place) for just MRCA’s and leave aside all the other airforce needs and requirements? Usually each service’s allocation during every 5 year Rancangan Malaysia is around USD 3-4 billion.

    This looks more and more like a child’s want for new toys rather than a thoroughly studied and calculated requirement based on available budget and current requirement of malaysian defence expected from the airforce.

  6. If not wrong USD 1 bil for 18 su30 mkm, if gov willing to spend USD 3 bil why dont we get 2nd batch of mkm. for the same amount you can get 54 mkm, that is more power project than 18 typhoon. some people might say the typhoon is for interceptor to replace mig29 role, but if u have 54 to would they think twice

  7. The issue of ”nuclear capability” is not whether the aircraft is wired to carry a tactical nuke but whether it systems are ”hardened” for the after affects of a nuclear blast. In the case of the French their Mirage Ns are ”hardened” to carry the ASMP as the missile is part of France’s nuke deterrent. The Brits sole means of a nuke attack are their SSBNs; they have no tactical nukes anymore.

    Malaysia being the ”last” buyer of the Tyhoon or Rafale is of no issue and requires no justification. Why should it?? What’s important is that both types are still widely operated, still supported by the OEMs and offer latest improvements. It’s not as if we’re buying a type that is not supported by the OE anymore or one that other uses are slowly retiring.

    Yes on paper there are other things we need but the fact remains that new MRCAs [even 18 or 12] will make a difference given that an already small fighter fleet will get smaller when the fulcrums are gone. Also, while we have the luxury of giving opinions as to what we should place priority on; the 2 armed services don’t. They still have to have plans to cater for all kinds of scenarios and must have a minimal capability [based on financial and other constraints] in several areas. A compelling case can be made to support the argument that we need medium range UAS or MPAs [to use as an example] but an equally compelling case can also be made for why we need to invest in MRCAs or SPHs; even if there is little likelihood of us being caught in a state on state conflict.

  8. Yes even additional 8 new MRCA will make a difference, but in the end by just how much?

    The airforce needs to justify just how much a diffence would it make to malaysian defence if:

    a) add 8 MRCA to the 18 MKM and 8 hornets?

    b) add 12 MPA to replace the 4 beechcrafts plus other items that could be bought with the MRCA budget?

  9. Kinda see that coming. Looks like we wont be seeing any new rmaf aircrafts in near future.

    There are a lot of factors playing in choosing which aircraft that the rmaf wants. First to look at their operational needs. A true multirole is what they need it seems plus the capability to do maritime strike.

    Next might be operational availability. Since rmaf have a small fleet they need a fleet that have high percentage of being ready to fly instead of being grounded for repair and stuffs.

    If about support for maintenance and supply, both have no problem. Seems like the french will only use rafale till 2040s and brits are planning to use their typhoon side by side with their F35 for long time. If im not wrong.

    If only the requirement is only for 12 aircrafts for first batch. Things might be easier.

    Again. Just my 2cent ^^.

  10. Azrul,

    Quantity has a certain level of quality, no doubt, but in this day and age, things are software not hardware driven. 8 networked 25 year old F/A-18Cs will have much better SA than 16 non networked 2 year old Typhoons.

    Some may disagree but the fact remains that the RMAF – based on current and future requirements – has legitimate reasons for wanting new MRCAs. It’s not as if they’re for use only at LIMA or on 31st August. Also, even if cash was not available at present, the RMAF [like its sister services] has to keep pushing for its requirements so that the requirement stays there till cash can be allocated. That is how it works, the services don’t wait until there’s cash before they register a requirement. I don’t always agree with everything we do but I realise that the services have legitimate reasons for pushing what they want [even if I disagree] and that there’s various aspects, driving procurement and policy, that I’m not aware of.

  11. …….,

    Before the Treasury and folks at the EPU approve anything [even in principle]; the RMAF will have to thoroughly justify things, several times with sharp questions [some illogical] being asked. I’ve heard stories from people unfortunate enough to have been involved.

    The fact remains that there is no pleasing everyone. ‘A’ can provide 10 good/valid reasons to buy helis but ”B’ can also do the same to justify radars : both aren’t wrong.

  12. @azlan

    I understand, but we haven’t seen a coheasive and comprehensive plan for tudm’s future (even a simplified one) like what the navy has with its 15-5 plan. There is no visible plan for the airforce to meaningfully contribute to say the security of the ESSCOM areas. Just having token force of helicopters and fighter rotations does not contribute to helping secure the area of kidnappers, pirates and terrorists.

    everyone can provide good reasons for their pet projects. but can they give a valid reason in the global context of securing and defending malaysia?

    So which one does TUDM really need to better contribute to malaysian day to day security and defence?

    – state of the art fighters capable of omnirole deep strike missions.

    or

    – ISR/MPA capable aircraft that could monitor the countries borders, either land or sea.

    I don’t think that question is being answered by the TUDM top brass.

  13. “Quantity has a certain level of quality, no doubt, but in this day and age, things are software not hardware driven. 8 networked 25 year old F/A-18Cs will have much better SA than 16 non networked 2 year old Typhoons”
    I agree with the statement above.
    History have proven again and again, that air warfare need SA, force multipliers etc. Look what happen during arab/isrealis wars. even now, the IDF/airforce is able to launch surgical strike little or no resistance.
    Lets be small but deadly.

  14. Well, If I had my way, it will be either :
    a. 20 F-15s and 30 F-16s latest version of course, or
    b. 25 Gripens and 40 Hawk 200s

    and please 20-30 units of cougar class medium heli’s. That’s about it.

    Realistic? Yes. Achieveable? Yes

  15. After waiting and waiting for many years, my conclusion is… Our beloved country needs fighter jets really reallu badly. But sadly… they are just too expensive and we cant… we cannot afford… not even with the ” scheme / benefits ” offered. They are just too expensive.
    Final option i would say… dont get chinese fighters. Go for 2nd hand f/a-18 or if really no choice upgrade our migs. Saying this itelf makes me so sad.

  16. hohoho….malaysia no interest anymore sukhoi..
    its all because mh17 i think

    Reply
    We have lost interest in everything Russian for the last five years, MH17 is just a good excuse,

  17. Why did we lost interest on russian equipment may i ask?

    Reply
    Because there is no one there to force it down the throats of the Armed Forces

  18. It is not about which fighter but when the needed money is available.
    If 2020 is the time when MRCA is decided then it may be a bit late. The plane itself will be received in 2022. In 2025 everyone else will think about 5th gen fighter.

    I think RMAF should make a road plan how they will modernize their fighters. In order to achieve that, politicians should stay out.
    IMO what RMAF need is a stop gap, upgrading the migs or trade in to another suhkoi is acceptable but as you know the desire to operate Russian’s at low level at the moment. It makes bad to worse.

  19. ……. – ” but we haven’t seen a coheasive and comprehensive plan for tudm’s future ”

    You assume that just because the RMAF hasn’t publicly shared its ”coheasive and comprehensive plan for tudm’s future ” that there isn’t one. …..

    …….. – ” There is no visible plan for the airforce to meaningfully contribute to say the security of the ESSCOM areas. Just having token force of helicopters and fighter rotations does not contribute to helping secure the area of kidnappers, pirates and terrorists.”

    Again : the RMAF does not have the luxury og focusing one one specific threat. It has to cater for various contingencies. As for ”meaningful” contribution to ESSCOM – on top of the assets that are currently there; what else would you have the RMAF deploy there? The ”token” force, which BTW is augmented by police, army and MMEA assets, is sufficient for the task; it’s not as if a threat is posed by the USAF’s 7th Bomb Wing and 4th Fighter Wing. Like many you assume [at least that’s the impression you give] that the problem in ESSCOM is hardware : it’s not. It’s bureaucracy, political interference and the fact that different organisations have to work together.

    …….. – ”I don’t think that question is being answered by the TUDM top brass.”

    You’ve formed that conclusion based on your personal preferences, what you personally believe we should focus on and the fact that the RMAF hasn’t presented its plans publicly like the RMN has; not on hard facts or reality. Whilst you seem to believe that the RMAF has no firm or realistic plans to cater for current and future – possible – requirements; this is not the case.

  20. Its seems that, the choice is fixated by twin engines planes. Is Malaysia that big, thus the need of the twin engines fighter? IMHO the most cost effective is the Grippen NG, We can get Quality and Quantity for the same amount money for Rafale and Typhoon.

    On the selection choice, does it decided by Politicians or the TUDM? We knew what happen when politician decided we choose AMRAAMSKI

    Reply
    TUDM will make the recommendations, final decision will be taken by the politicians as it is everywhere else in this kind of program.

  21. zulu,

    Like in any country, the final decision on big ticket items will be heavily based on political considerations.

  22. @ azlan

    From your words

    “RMAF does not have the luxury of focusing on one specific threat”

    We know the budget is always finite, yet tudm for the recent past is focusing sharply on MRCA, which everyone could see would cost way more than the available budget. If it does not have the luxury of focusing on one specific threat (which I totally agree with you on that), could you explain (from your contact with the people in the know) why is the total concentration for the need for a new MRCA?

  23. “”As for ”meaningful” contribution to ESSCOM – on top of the assets that are currently there; what else would you have the RMAF deploy there? The ”token” force, which BTW is augmented by police, army and MMEA assets, is sufficient for the task; it’s not as if a threat is posed by the USAF’s 7th Bomb Wing and 4th Fighter Wing.””

    Yes right now no other useful assets to be deployed there. And that is what im talking about. If tudm would plan to aquire more ISR assets such as MPA aircraft, MALE UAV’s, light aircraft with EO pods, signal relay aircrafts, probably that would be more useful than a handful new MRCA don’t you think?

  24. ………,

    As I’ve pointed out time and time again : what the priority should be or which is more ”useful” is a matter of opinion; irrespective of whether one personally agrees or not. ou can write a whole paper providing full justification as to why Cougars, more Scaneagles and radars are needed; someone else can do the same justifying MRCAs, AEWs and more transports; not only for conflicts but also for peacetime utility. There is no pleasing everyone.

    As for MRCA’s it’s not as if the requirement has just surfaced; it has been there for years. Obviously, when weighting things up and when looking at current threat perceptions and future eventualities; the RMAF feels that the priority for now are MRCAs. Irrespective of whether there’s cash or not, it has to continue pushing for its requirements. When the Fulcrums go, there will be a capability gap and with lesser number of air frames; meeting its peacetime operational requirements [QRA, training, exercises, etc] will be even harder – with only 8 Hornets and 18 MKMs [not of of which will be operational at any given time]. It’s not as if the MRCAs are purely for prestige or to waste the taxpayer’s ringgit [as some would suggest].

    ESSCOM. There are already UAVs/UAS there and a number of assets belonging to the MAF, police and MMEA. Soon there will be coastal radars in addition to the forward bases. Again, the problem is not hardware or the lack of it but other issues.

  25. Q1 – why do we need new MRCAs?
    To replace the mig-29s

    Q2 – what is the capability served by the mig-29?
    QRA alert, air defence, basic land attack capability (iron bombs)

    Q3 – What is the performance of the mig-29?
    Max speed 2.3mach
    Max range 1500km, 2100km with 1 drop tank
    Weapon load 4 tonnes

    Q4 – what is the most cost effective aircraft that could replace mig-29 role in tudm?
    Lets answer this question.

  26. …… – ” could you explain (from your contact with the people in the know) why is the total concentration for the need for a new MRCA?”

    We don’t need ”people in the know” to figure out why there’s a need for MRCAs; merely some basic knowledge of how air arms operate; what the RMAF’s peacetime and wartime roles are and some common sense. I can’t speak for others but personally, I won’t be so rash or presumptuous to assume that the RMAF is not ”thinking out of the box”, has it’s priorities wrong or sees MRCAs as super toys just because I may not agree with certain decisions taken; especially given that a lot is happening behind the scenes that I’m not aware of. With regards to the MRCAs; for all we know it’s also the government that has determined that this should be a priority.

    Sure, given current geo-political environment there is a 90 percent chance that there won’t be a scenarios in which calls for fighters but even in the 10 percent likelihood that such a scenario occurs; it will more than justify the investments made in fighters. MPAs – no doubt there is a need and if we’re faced with a situation where MPAs are needed then great but what happens if we’re faced with a situation in which fighters – by themselves or with MPAs – are needed? And can anyone say with certainty that the 4 Beechcrafts, 2 C-130 MPs and 2 MMEA Bombardiers are not sufficient – for the time being – to meet our operational needs in areas that are of concern, e.g. ESSCOM and the Spratlys. A strong case can also be made to suggest that funding for the MPAs should come from other sources and not just the RMAF’s budget : after all, a lot of things the MPAs will be doing will also benefit others apart from the RMAF. ESSCOM – right now everyone’s focus is on ESSCOM but what happens if an unexpected threat arises from elsewhere; a threat which requires different solutions to the ones facing ESSCOM? Sure, such a scenario is highly unlikely but prior to 2013 who would have predicted that non state actors would have landed in the Lahad Dato area?

    We don’t have to look at the possible wartime scenarios but merely the current peacetime operational commitments the RMAF’s already overstretched fighter fleet faces to understand that meeting its commitments with what it currently has is a huge challenge. It has to be ready to defend our airspace both against state and non state threats, as well as other contingencies. It has to maintain resource intensive 24/7 QRAs with not only a pair of fighters on standby but another pair as standbys. In short, just ensuring 4 fighters are ready for QRA has an immense impact on the whole fleet. A few years ago the Czech air force chief said that meeting NATO commitments by having a 24/7 QRA meant that nearly the whole Gripen fleet was required to support just a pair on QRA duties – this with a fighter marketed as easier to maintain that the likes of larger, twin engine Rafales and Typhoons.

    The RMAF also has to ensure that enough fighters are ready for training sorties as well as the number of exercises conducted annually, both local and bilateral with foreign partners. On top of that, it has to train for it’s main function, dealing with external threats, by itself or jointly with its sister services. All this with just 18 MKMs and 8 Hornets! Not all of which will be operational at any given time. Some may point out that MRCAs can wait till times are better but this argument conveniently ignore the fact that if things are allowed to atrophy or a rot is allowed to set in to deep; getting back on track will take a long time.

  27. …….. – ”Q1 – why do we need new MRCAs?
    To replace the mig-29s”

    It’s more than that. It’s to replace the MiGs with a platform capable of performing more than just an interceptor.

    ……… – ”Q2 – what is the capability served by the mig-29?”

    Our Fulcrums were never employed to even dumb bombs.

    ……. – ”Q4 – what is the most cost effective aircraft that could replace mig-29 role in tudm? ”Lets answer this question.”

    If you want to go down this route again; I’m more than happy to oblige. ”Cost effective” doesn’t necessarily mean something offers the same capabilities ; profound difference between both ….

  28. Lets say we buy the typhoon or rafale. Say we got the cash to buy just 12 for usd3billion.

    How would we use the MRCA for QRA. If the czechs need all 12 of their easier to maintain gripens for a 2 aircraft 24/7 QRA, by reasoning the MRCA would be the same, if not worse. By that is it a prudent way to spend the money?

    We need more airframes for training and other purposes yes I ageee on that, but is it being fulfilled by the MRCA buy of typhoons or rafales?

    Is the MRCA the most important new item for TUDM to buy to do its day to day defence of the country?

    And could you try to answer (never mind what the airforce buys eventually) if you could do it differently, what could be bought for usd3billion instead of the 12 typhoon or rafale?

    This is just a discussion, everybody knows (even me) the airforce knows what the best for them, but why is there this hostile tone on anyone disagreeing on the MRCA direction? Cannot talk about other options?

  29. ……. – ”If the czechs need all 12 of their easier to maintain gripens for a 2 aircraft 24/7 QRA,”

    Think …. The Czechs only have 12 Gripens, period/full stop. Their L-59s can’t do QRAs. We are in a slightly better position due to numbers.

    …….. – ”but is it being fulfilled by the MRCA buy of typhoons or rafales?”

    More air frames offer more flexibility in that there are more numbers of air frames that are operational for the various roles performed regularly. Given that at any one time ‘x’ number will be undergoing depot level maintenance and others will be down undergoing squadron level maintenance; extra numbers means that there are more air frames for training needs.

    ……… – ”the MRCA the most important new item for TUDM to buy to do its day to day defence of the country?”

    Again …… This is subjective and depends entirely on any scenarios that we might face for real.

    ……… – ” what could be bought for usd3billion instead of the 12 typhoon or rafale?”

    I would stay the course. I can’t provide a better answer than that as I’m unaware of various factors that drives procurement decisions.

    …….. – ”but why is there this hostile tone on anyone disagreeing on the MRCA direction? ”

    I have no issues with disagreements but you dismiss stuff that doesn’t fit in your narrative. You’re right in questioning where the cash is coming from and even questioning whether we should focus elsewhere but you’re being presumptuous in saying that for the RMAF new MRCAs are merely toys.

    Your answer to the solution is unrealistic : a ”lightweight light attack/trainer” [this BTW is how the OEM designates it]. The RMAF’s requirements clearly call for a twin engine MRCA, not a lightweight light attack/trainer. A lightweight light attack/trainer does not suit the stated requirements, can’t do what a MRCA can and is not – at present – integrated with all the stuff that the RMAF would need for it to perform some of the roles an MRCA would have performed – thus buying it for ”cost effectiveness” doesn’t make sense when there is no requirement for it in the very first place and it doesn’t deliver the desired capability; so what ”cost effectiveness” has one achieved?

    As for other options : what’s the point of discussing them if they’re unlikely to happen. I’d rather stay within the bounds of reality.

  30. U are right Azlan…
    Thanks for the information..
    Is there any way for the rmaf to get about 10 F18/D Hornet with good condition and upgrade it?
    Because it can close the gap for 10y..
    Just a thought..

  31. It’s like saying what’s the point of arming your ships with ASMs and topedo decoys when a state vs state war is not likely. Bear in mind, MRCA through air superiority increases the survivability of almost every other asset, in a way no other asset can.

  32. All this with just 18 MKMs and 8 Hornets! Not all of which will be operational at any given time. Some may point out that MRCAs can wait till times are better

    Wow it is rather unsettling of the above situation, buying MRCA is not like, plug n play, and our pilots can do as advertise in 12 months, It needs years to achieve operational excellence in a new hardware.
    People forget that our astros, armour, infantry, navy needs air cover, we dont even talk yet about, awacs and istar assets.

    Time is wasted as we wait longer

  33. Yes I don’t see what Gripen can’t do that the larger and more expensive Rafale and Typhoon can’t [especially in our context] but it’s the politicians that decide. I raised this a while ago but I suspect that the RTAF operating it [not that we see Thailand as a threat but probably for other reasons] plays a part as well as the RMAF still seeing a need for a twin engine platform.

    Irrespective of whether Rafale or Gripen is – eventually, as I have no idea where and when the cash is coming from – selected; will be interesting to see how we employ it alongside our existing platforms. Mix packages with Hornets and MKMs will make sense as the both types can still contribute when operating alongside the newer Rafale/Typhoon – both have capabilities that can complement each other. If we don’t replace the Bars with an AESA; when operating with Rafale/Typhoon the MKMs can go radar silent and rely of feed provided by Rafale/Typhoon via data link. The MKM – being based on the Su-27 – excels and was designed from the onset to operate at high altitudes so perhaps this is something that can be taken into consideration when employing them together.

    Given that squadrons don’t have the same level of proficiency performing all the roles they are required and spend more time training on certain roles compared to others; perhaps maritime strike can be performed exclusively or mainly by the Hornets and MKMs; enabling Rafale/Typhoon to focus or specialise on other roles such as air to air. It goes without being said that whilst our squadrons must have the ability to perform interdiction and CAS; it must not be at the expense of air to air. The bad news with going for Rafale is that none of the missiles its offer with are compatible with ones used by the Hornets and Hawks. Should RMAF Typhoons be armed with AMRAAM or Meteor?

  34. Musa,

    Even in the extremely unlikely event that we can afford and will order F-35s; who is to say we’ll receive it sooner than had we ordered something else? Also, ordering F-35 will also signify a major policy change in that we are openly getting closer to Uncle Sam. Note that sales of F-35 is part and parcel of U.S. policy to bring countries closer to it from a strategic geopolitical angle. We have a close defence relationship with Uncle Sam but unlike other we don’t openly display it; at least not to the extent that others do.

  35. Zulu,

    We also need MPAs and other non sexy stuff but the idea is to decide on which to prioritise based on current needs. We have 4 Beehcrafts and C-130s that can be used for surveillance and routine patrolling [the main sensor being the Mark 1 eyeball], as well as MMEA assets. On paper it’s not sufficient but maybe the planners have decided that [for the time being] it’s sufficient based on current operational needs and the threat environment.

  36. If the decision is that only Rafale and Typhoon are now under consideration then no point to debate what might be and look at one against the other in big picture. There are various political and industrial advantages of going with Typhoon over Rafale.

    BAE are also the OEM for Hawk, so don’t just look at an MRCA buy, look at wrapping up a few RMAF future requirements in one package. Any MRCA will increase training gap from Macchi / Hawk so why not do a package of Typhoon, new Hawk Trainer, retire Macchi and Hawk 108, get BAE to throw in 208 Upgrade! Fix a lot of problems at once! Better to do in one hit than have to keep looking for budget later.

    UK, Saudi, Oman, Kuwait will operate Typhoon for next 30-35 years so no support problems and all those Typhoons have similar hardware, so no more PTM – Peculiar to Malaysia standards meaning cheaper support costs. Most of those Air Forces also operating new Hawks, so opportunities for training exchange.

    Also, Dassualt not a lot of experience in Performance Based Contracting but BAE doing this on most Typhoon’s.

    India now publishing Rafale cost at Euro 144.6m each which is a lot more than Typhoon. Also some things which are basic for Typhoon are additional cost for Rafale, like HMSS which is basic requirement for any fighter. India paying for HMSS but from Israel so not for Malaysia! Towed Decoy also a bolt on for Rafale, not integrated to DASS from design. M88 engine not upgraded and even Safran saying Rafale now too heavy! EF200 most reliable and powerful in this size aircraft.
    Already mentioned but Typhoon can use some of RMAF existing weapons until RMAF get budget for MBDA weapons (same MBDA package whether Rafale or Typhoon), and then things like Rafale AESA is 1st Gen AESA technology which can only communicate with Meteor in 1 direction unlike Captor-E. Typhoon carries 2 x big Maritime weapons, Rafale only 1 Exocet, so have to send double the Rafale’s to saturate Ship protection systems as 1 ASW low chance of kill. Typhoon has a funded enhancement programme, Rafale not really, just an unfunded claim.
    Remember also what BAE did for Malaysian Industry with Hawk offset, CTRM, SMEA getting good work and still building bits for Hawk. What capability have France brought to Malaysian industry so far on any programme, Scorpene etc.
    FPDA – UK, Australia and maybe in 10 years Singapore going to get F-35. RAF will have worked out all doctrine for Typhoon / F-35 operating together. RMAF can work much better with UK, Australia and Sing from interoperability perspective. BAE also developing Hawk to take radar feed from Typhoon, so RMAF end up with much bigger capability than just an MRCA… If Malaysia go for Rafale then its all about Politics as cannot be about the Aircraft, Support or Offset!

  37. Inter operatability with FPDA country is good. Sg is no hurry to buy F35. But u can make a gd estimate. SG defend minister already say F35 to be flying and working with F15SG by 2030. Tat would mean a buy around 2020 to 2025 in batches.

  38. “….MRCA… If Malaysia go for Rafale then its all about Politics as cannot be about the Aircraft, Support or Offset!”. Good view on EF2000 vs Rafale.

  39. If the descision is by 2020,

    Another option available is the Kuwaiti Hornets would be available by then, and Australian hornets could be snapped up to be harvested for their spareparts.

  40. Just wondering, does our current diplomatic situation with Russia affects the MKMs maintenance or parts procurement?

    I understand that the Russian side is not really efficient, but did things got worse after MH17?

    Thanks.

    Reply
    Its gotten worse with the sanctions, not MH17

  41. Oman buy 12 typhoon and 8 hawk at around 4b.we need something like 15years 2 funded something like that . i hope bae gonna give us some ET tranche1 for free so we can retired our hornet and have only 2 types 2 operate.less headach and finally we can end our rojak nightmare.12each of ET trance 1&3 and 18 su sound good enough for me.

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