LANGKAWI: LIMA 17 preview. I have been thinking about writing a preview of LIMA 17 for some time now. However considering that we will be muddling through the year I could not figure out what to write even with the coming of LIMA until I actually arrived at Langkawi today.
My mental block had been made worse by the decision by the government to accept Saudi Arabia offer of excess aircraft – fighters for the air force and helicopters for the army.
The air force wants its own MRCA, thank you so that is that. As, for the army it couldn’t even afford low hour Brunei Blackhawks, so a deal for high-hour helicopters from the Saudi doesn’t sound too plausible. The navy in the meantime is still grappling with the LCS, LMS and even a possible deal for the MRSS.
Hopefully, the time I spend in Langkawi this week will be beneficial and we will get some clarity on these matters. And of course, there are other outstanding issues like the Hawk and Hercules upgrades, MPA requirement and others, like the MMEA OPV as well.
As for the LMS , the Star reported today:
KUALA LUMPUR: Boustead Holdings Bhd has secured a RM1.17bil contract from the Defence Ministry for the supply of four units of littoral mission ships (LMS).
In a filing with Bursa Malaysia Monday, Boustead said its subsidiary Boustead Naval Shipyard Sdn Bhd (BNS) had received and accepted the letter of acceptance (LOA) dated Marc 17 from the Defence Ministry.
“The contract, which is a collaboration between the Malaysian Government Chinese Government, was awarded to BNS under direct negotiation, for collaboration with a Partner Shipyard in China at a price of RM1.17bil (including Goods and Services Tax), to be implemented over four years effective from the date of signing of the LOA by BNS,” Boustead said.
It added that the Littoral Mission Ships would be designed by the Partner Shipyard and the first two vessels would be built and delivered in China in 2019 and 2020, whilst the remaining two vessels would be built and delivered in Malaysia in 2021.
Read more at http://www.thestar.com.my/business/business-news/2017/03/20/boustead-naval-shipyard-wins-rm1-17bil-job/#ScAcppSvoTBeIoSR.99
It is likely that the contract signing will be done here at LIMA 17. As for other contracts, I am told that the PDRM will finally signed the deal for M4 Carbine while the RMAF is going to sign the spare deal for the Sukhois.
Some of the RMAF Sukhois are already undergoing their mandatory 10-year depot check at the recently opened technical centre. The first Sukhoi if you may recalled were delivered in 2007 while the rest in batches until 2009.
As for the rest, let me do the hard work for you, just come back often during this week,hopefully I will have something to write home about. And also pray it stop raining in the next few days, otherwise we will only have static shots!
For the record, the air display (if it does not rain) will include the Dassault Rafale, Saab Gripen, Russian Knights Su-30SM, Indonesian Air Force Team Jupiter, Korean Air Force Black Eagles, Indian Air Force Sarang display team and the home team, RMAF, of course.
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