Like The Old Soldier

SHAH ALAM: Like the old soldier. Russian state owned news agency reported from Moscow on July 19 that Malaysia had signed an agreement to modernise RMAF Mig-29N Fulcrum fleet.

The report

A MIg-29N M43-04 flies in formation with Sukhoi Su-30MKM M52-10 and US Navy Super Hornets. Picture credit US Navy

Russia, Malaysia Sign Agreement on Modernization of Malaysian MiG-29

Russia and Malaysia have signed an agreement on the renovation and modernization of the Russia-produced MiG-29 fighter aircraft that form parts of the Royal Malaysian Air Force, a Sputnik correspondent reported from the MAKS International Aviation and Space Salon on Wednesday.ZHUKOVSKIY (Moscow Region) (Sputnik) — The document was signed by Russian Aircraft Corporation (RAC) MiG Director General Ilya Tarasenko and Malaysian Air Force representative Mohamed Fadzar bin Sufad on the margins of the MAKS.

“The agreement confirms the extension of our contractual obligations for the Malaysian Air Forces on the operation of MiG-29 fighter jets. The RAC MiG will continue its cooperation with the Malaysian Air Forces and will provide technical support for these aircraft,” Tarasenko said.

The MiG-29 supply contract was signed in Kuala Lumpur on June 7, 1994. The total contract value of 18 Russia-supplied aircraft was estimated at $560 billion. The MiG Corporation assumed the obligation to make the necessary adjustments and adapt the aircraft to Malaysian humid tropical climate. Malaysian MiG aircraft have come to be known as MiG-29N and MJG-29NUB, and formed Squadron 17 and Squadron 19 of the Royal Malaysian Air Force.

Mig-29N M43-03 flies together with a USAF F-22 Raptor at Cope Taufan 2014. 03 is one of the most pictured Fulcrum instantly recognisable for its colourful fins symbolising the 17th Squadron crest

Another report in turn says the deal will ensure that the Fulcrums will continue in service until 2020.

Russia have signed a contract with Malaysia to continue support services to the Russian supplied MiG-29 combat aircraft fleet operated by Royal Malaysian Air Force, during the MAKS 2017 Air show in Moscow.

The contract signed between RMAF and Russian MiG Corp ensures Russian support to operate the MiG-29N fleet until April 2020.

Fulcrums with ACMI pods

So what really happened on Wednesday in Moscow? I was not in Russia but most likely that the contract signed was between RAC MIG and ATSC Sdn Bhd, the Malaysian company set-up to maintain and support the Fulcrums.
An MB-339CM and a MIG-29N Fulcrum demonstrates an air-to air interception at the NCO demonstration ceremony at Kuantan airbase in May, 2016.

So will the Fulcrums be modernised, remain in service until 2020 or simply fade away?. To quote X-Files: The Truth is out there.

— Malaysian Defence

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