Et Tu LMS Batch II Part II

A CGI of Austal Australia 83 meter OPV. Picture used for illustration purpose. Austal.

SHAH ALAM: In the last post on the LMS Batch II I wrote about whether or not we can afford to build them while at the same time salvaging the White Elephant aka LCS project.

Well I have been told that the original budget for the LMS II was something around RM2.5 billion (RM312 million per ship) for the whole project. That was the reason the ship was supposed to be around 80 meter long, armed with guns, surface to surface missiles and MANPADs. Its basically a pimp up Keris class without any involvement of China.

Specifications of the Gading Marine Sigma 92 meter LMS Batch 2.

From the budget allocated we know that the LMS Batch II will cost some RM1.2 billion more from the Keris -class ship. The Keris class was supposed to cost RM1.17 billion but it was cut to RM1.048 billion (RM262 million per ship), after a review by the then PH Government. The four ships were also built in China instead of two there and and another two in Malaysia as off the original plan.
A graphic on RMN future procurement published on the Defence Minister social media. As stated in the graphic, the pictures used are only meant as representative only and not actual equipment.

Now, the new plan for the LMS Batch II which is supposed to be fully armed (though SAMs are still to be fitted for but not equipped) have seen the original budget (RM2.5 billion) meant for the first three ships, to be built during this RMK. The other five is expected to be build in RMK13 with an expected cost of RM4.1 billion. That is the reason the ship’s specifications have been tweaked so it will be a hull from 85 meter to 100 meters, a beam from 11 meters to 14 meters and a top speed of 28 knots.The armament is similar to previous smaller design – a 57 mm main gun, two SSMs, a VL SAM or VSHORAD (Fitted For But Not Equipped) and twin 30mm guns (could be a CIWS type).
A CGi of the Damen Sigma Corvette 8313, a slightly smaller variant of the 9113 corvette as offered by Gading Marine at DSA 2022. Damen

With a budget of RM2.5 billion, the fully equipped LMS Batch II should cost around RM833 million per ship which is still lower than the average price of 900 to 2500 tonnes corvettes, according to AMI International, a defence consultancy had said. AMI stated that average cost of such corvettes for the last ten years is around US$250 million (around RM1.05 billion) per ship.
A CGI of an Austal Australia 83 meter OPV. Austal.

Could we get a ship around 2500 tonnes for less than RM1 billion? If we get the hull and its equipment below RM500 million, of course we can. But the bigger question whether the government can afford it especially with the current world economic environment with many people predicting a world wide recession is coming.
KD Keris. Malaysian Defence

Furthermore, with the government need to pay RM3 billion for the LCS in this two RMKs, will be any more money to pay for LMS Batch II?

— Malaysian Defence

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Shah Alam

70 Comments

  1. It is the job of the people in the government to work the budget out. There are many options sometimes we need to break it into several phase instead on 2. Or reduce the numbers or even fine tune to get as required thus reduced the cost per ship. The LCS yes needs more money and again the budget has to be workout while ensuring that the budget still meets the requirement for government to run. Pepatah kat setiap Ada jalan Ada jawapan.

  2. Before we buy a ship, first the mission for such a ship must be very clear from the start.

    Firstly, why do we need a fully armed corvette? What is the primary mission for it? How would it fit in the overall RMN plans and other ships?

    Secondly, what about the original intent of the LMS project, which is to cover the primary mission set of FAC’s, MCMV’s and Fast Troop Vessels (FTV’s)? What ships are now going to take up those missions in the future?

    Thirdly, in the near term for the next 5 years, there will be 9 big ships that will need new crews (6 LCS Frigate and 3 LMS batch 2 Corvette). There is no major plans for any ship to be retired for the next 5 years, so that is around 1,200 new recruits to be trained.

    Setting that aside for a moment, we look at the budget and the suitable ships available off the shelf for the budget.

    Ringgit value has been steadily declining now. The conversion rate is now nearly RM4.40 to a single US Dollar. If we conservatively plan for RM4.50 to 1 US Dollar, the allocated RM2.5 billion is valued at around 555 million dollars. That is about 185+ million dollars for each ship.

    It still means that the best value vessel for the money is still the Hyundai built Jose Rizal Class Frigates. The 107.5m 2,600 tonnes ship costs 168 million dollars each (nearly half the cost of our Kedah class OPVs). Costs could be further reduced if the 76mm main gun and TRS-3D radar from Kedah Class ships is transferred, as they are the exact same equipment as the Jose Rizal class ships.
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/fc/BRP_Jose_Rizal%28FF-150%29.jpg

    So a budget of RM2.5 billion in RMK12 and a further RM4.1 billion in RMK13 could indeed get RMN eight of the very capable Hyundai Jose Rizal Class ships.

    But back to the original question. What will be those ships main Mission? Just to mainly patrol the EEZ? Will they be able to be used, or even survive in a major shooting war in South China Sea? What are the odds for these ships to survive Hypersonic Missile attacks?

    If those ships at best, only survivable as patrol ships, do we really need fully armed corvettes then?

    Would the same budget better used for buying 8 fit for purpose OPVs for MMEA like the DAMEN 1800 OPV, or the HYUNDAI 3000 tonne OPV, plus getting 2 more Scorpene submarines instead?

  3. gonggok – ”Firstly, why do we need a fully armed corvette? What is the primary mission for it? How would it fit in the overall RMN plans and other ships?”

    gonggok – ”What will be those ships main Mission? Just to mainly patrol the EEZ? Will they be able to be used, or even survive in a major shooting war in South China Sea? What are the odds for these ships to survive Hypersonic Missile attacks?”

    No idea if you are asking rhetorically or otherwise but the answer is plainly obvious : to perform in certain operational conditions/scenarios which don’t call for a larger LCS – this has not changed. So no; we don’t need them ”just to patrol the SCS” as you mentioned….

    gonggok – ”What are the odds for these ships to survive Hypersonic Missile attacks?”

    Unsurprising you’d ask a question of this nature. Let me ask; what are the chances of them being fired upon by a hypersonic missile; as it stands even the likes of a Burke or Type 45 would struggle against a hypersonic missile.

    Using your logic I could also ask why even buy 3 MALES when at some future point someone could come up with a way of spoofing; that would make it impossible to operate the sensors of MALE… Why even bother buying aircraft when in the future someone will enable lasers to be widely deployed… Note that like the hypersonic missiles you mentioned; lasers and certain EW means to neutralise UASs are available and are in various forms of development; just not widely widely operational or reached a certain level of maturity yet…

    gonggok – ”If those ships at best, only survivable as patrol ships, do we really need fully armed corvettes then?”

    What on earth does ”only survivable as patrol ships” even mean? Do you even know? Depends on the type of conflict doesn’t it? In the right circumstances even a LCS or a Kirov for that matter would be vulnerable ….

    gonggok – ”Would the same budget better used for buying 8 fit for purpose OPVs for MMEA like the DAMEN 1800 OPV, or the HYUNDAI 3000 tonne OPV, ”

    Apples to oranges comparison; we are [if you didn’t notice] on the subject of naval ships; not MMEA ships. Furthermore LMSs [or ”corvettes” if it floats your ship] are intended for different purposes compared to a OPV as such any comparisons [which you very well know despite the question you asked] or which is ”better” should not arise. Last but not least; the MMEA has no intention of getting 3,000 tonne OPVs for the simple reason that ships of that displacement are superfluous to operational requirements. No doubt you know better [or are convinced you do] but the MMEA [whilst not infallible] has a pretty good idea as to what it needs; what it doesn’t need , etc, etc.

    Much more pertinent and interesting [for me at least] questions to be asked if whether these ships still have the needed free deckspace to mount modular payloads of if they are intended to be operated in a conventional way? As it stands we have no idea what design will be selected; contrary to assumptions; design showcased at DSA are there because it was thought to be of interest to the RMN; whether the RMN actually wants or is intrested to designs which have so far appeared; is the question ….

  4. I have been told that the RMN likes the ones that had been displayed so far at DSA but no ship is a favourite. Most of the ships have the attributes that the RMN had asked so far.

  5. Might as well make this 8 unit LMS batch 2 as OPV and transfer/convert existing Kedahs as LMS + 4 existing LMS,keris Class.That the only way to justify this decision again at least from my perspective..In future 8 brand new fully equipped OPV/corvettes (LMS batch 2) + 10 LMS (6 kedahs + 4 keris)

  6. Azlan,

    “answer is plainly obvious : to perform in certain operational conditions/scenarios which don’t call for a larger LCS”
    As always, the open ended answer that is not really an answer. Always that certain something but until now, what that certain scenario is still undefined.

    Malaysian maritime security involves every service : RMN, MMEA, Police and even TDM. A fully armed Corvette, stuck at port in event of a major shooting war, is similarly not useful as a lightly armed MMEA OPV. If a scenario does not call for RMN LCS Gowind capability, can that scenario use MMEA OPV instead? Or a smaller less than 35 million dollar 50m modular multi purpose well armed ship that is true to the original LMS intent (do FAC(M), MCMV, light logistics, hydrography support and adding ASW support) rather than a full blown 185+ million dollar corvette? My idea of a LMS batch 2 concept that is not a full blown 185+ million dollar corvette.
    https://www.malaysiandefence.com/cabinet-approved-resumption-of-lcs-project/#comment-506849

    To me, this is the scenario that RMN need to be prepared for :
    https://www.malaysiandefence.com/et-tu-lms-batch-ii/#comment-518962

    For other low level maritime border conflicts, any small boats, FACs, or even corvettes could be cost effectively be countered by my proposed small 50m modular multi purpose LMS supported by armed UAVs. Which is the Bayraktar TB2 is by far the most cost effective equipment to do it. What RMAF currently budgets for 3 MALE UAV could buy a whole squadron of TB2s.
    http://mobile.twitter.com/RALee85/status/1521068198287880193
    http://mobile.twitter.com/UAWeapons/status/1523248496954032128

  7. The way I see it, the LMS2 are effectively taking over the position previously allocated to Kedah Batch2 in the ori 15to5 plan. Very similar in size, armament(fully fitted), & tonnage. I am still uncertain what their role would be defined, or perhaps TLDM had amalgamated the LMS & Kedah Batch2 roles into 1 type with LMS2. Another uncertainty is how much of the changes is what TLDM wants or what the Govt wants as the previous plan laid out a clear distinction in vessel sizes & role between the LMS, Kedah & LCS classes. I am speculating that Govt could be overbudgeting LMS2 project to a tune up to RM 3Bil just so that BNS could use that money to complete LCS while waiting for its resolution that would unlock the extra budget intended for it to be used instead for LMS2.

  8. If history serves me right. the gowind design was pick by 2011 and construction only start by 2025 right?

    So how can the LMS batch 2 be built this RMK?

  9. This is the official current RMN requirements for the LMS Batch 2

    General specifications
    Length overall 80-100m
    Beam 10-14m
    Speed(max) 28knots
    Speed(cruise) 14knots
    Propulsion System CODAD (combined diesel and diesel)
    Main engine 4
    Shaft line 2x CPP (constant pitch propeller)
    Endurance 4000NM/21days
    Weapons
    – A gun 57mm
    – Y gun 30mm CIWS
    – 2x NSM Launcher
    – surface to air missile or point defence missile system

    This is the specification that is put up by RMN at DSA 2022
    http://pictr.com/images/2022/03/31/BThWXZ.jpg

    This is some specs of the Jose Rizal
    http://pictr.com/images/2022/03/31/BThQhn.jpg

    This is the specs of SIGMA 9113 promoted by Gading Marine, as Marhalim says, liked by RMN and have the attributes that RMN wants.
    https://www.malaysiandefence.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/gading2.jpg

    There latest RMN requirement is basically to have a conventional corvette/light frigate. No requests to include any modular spaces. No requests to be able to do mine countermeasures or other things that originally the LMS project wanted to be able to achieve. Still, is the requirement really tailored to a possible mission set that RMN needs to accomplish? How would the MCMV be done in the future if we buy these fully armed Corvettes? How survivable is a corvette with just point defence missiles against future anti-ship capabilities like hypersonic missiles, or even loitering munitions that is starting to proliferate?

  10. ”Very similar in size, armament(fully fitted), & tonnage. I am still uncertain what their role would be defined, or perhaps TLDM had amalgamated the LMS & Kedah Batch2 roles into 1 type with LMS2.”

    The LMSs will have a shallower draught compared to the Kedahs; useful for certain areas. As it stands the proposal to include follow on Kedahs in the 5/15 is dead. The idea is for the LMSs to perform roles such as AsuW, ASW, coastal escort and other things in operational circumstances which do not necessarily require a LCS. Of course it’s also driven by the fact that the RMN can’t afford to have the number of LCSs it needs.

  11. gonggok – ”As always, the open ended answer that is not really an answer. ”

    It is the answer but to you – ”as always ” – it’s not because it clashes with another one of your misconceived assumptions.

    Since you missed it the past few dozen times around I’ll oblige by pointing this out again : the LMSs are intended for certain roles [including niche ones] in a purely or mainly littoral setting [compared to the LCSs which also can operate in a non littoral setting] in operational circumstances which do not require a larger and more expensive LCS.. Depending on the threat environment and operational circumstances the LMSs can work alone or alongside other assets, performing stuff such as coastal escort; ASuW; MCM, etc in operational conditions suitable for a ship this size and fit out. If this is still not an answer let me know and I’ll try to put in in a much simpler form for your benefit.

    gonggok – ”my proposed small 50m modular multi purpose LMS supported by armed UAVs.”

    ”Your small 50m modular multi purpose LMS supported by armed UAV” is great for certain operational circumstances; contrary to your assertion is no ”better’ or a one size fit all solution . You mentioned ”low level maritime border conflicts” – what was ”low level” now can be profoundly different to what it commonly was in the past. Your ”small 50m modular multi” may be inadequate and your ”cheap” TB2 may not be able to fly if deployed in contested airspace or if the target has AD systems with a certain range; even in a ”low level’ conflict.

    gonggok – ”A fully armed Corvette, stuck at port in event of a major shooting war, is similarly not useful as a lightly armed MMEA OPV. ”

    In the ‘event of a major shooting war” [to quote you] a ”lightly armed MMEA OPV” would also not be able to put to sea. As for your ”not useful” yes you have a penchant for apples to oranges simplistic comparisons; why don’t you tell me a GPMG is more useful than a rifle or a IFV more useful than a MBT? Or you going to make the spurious claim that hypersonic missiles [which aren’t even yet widely in service] pose a threat to our ships when even a Tico cruiser would struggle against them.

    gonggok – ”What RMAF currently budgets for 3 MALE UAV could buy a whole squadron of TB2s.”

    In case you missed the point or the plot; the current requirement is for a MALE UAS for ISR; it’s not for a UAS with a strike capability. Might be news to you but people tend to buy things which fit in line with their operational requirements…..

  12. Ops I meant to wrote 2015.

    So about 2-3 years to pick a design after the bidding, then 3-4 years of formality from picking the winner of a design to actual construction, And then 3-4 more years of construction right?

  13. “whether the government can afford it”
    Can the Govt afford it? Well we had been very gung ho with the debt ceiling every since PH rulers broke it so the sky is the limit since debts can be denominated in ringgit and we basically could print our way out of it. What we cannot afford is such project to fail again as did the many before it (but going by track record it probably will).

  14. Actially the RMN is short of hulls. In fact to effectively control thw SCS tje RMN needs at least 10 hulls. So that at least 4 hulls can be constantly be maintained at sea whilw the remainder would be at dock undergoing repairs n maintenance n trainning purposes.
    So the need of the RMN now is Hulls. Thats the reason why thw RMN had to adopt the out of box sokution to tenew the propulsion system n power system , repair or even to replace the old hulls with newly builr ones of old obsolete crafts just to pur hulls out to sea

  15. lee – ”the reason why thw RMN had to adopt the out of box sokution to tenew the propulsion system n power system , repair or even to replace the old hulls with newly builr ones of old obsolete crafts just to pur hulls out to sea”

    It’s sheer necessity; rather than ”out of box sokutions”. All the contingency measures were planned years ago and were put off; kept as a last gap solution. I first heard of plans to re hull the Laksamanas in 2013/14.

    The Laksamanas were constructed for the calmer waters of the Gulf and the FACs are intended limited sea denial ops for limited periods at sea; we use both types of ships for things they weren’t originally designed for – extended patrols [lasting up to weeks] in the EEZ and other areas in which; especially during the monsoon; sea conditions can get rough; taking a toll of hulls and crew alike. That is also the prime reason we replaced the Kedah, Sabah and Keris PCs – all of which were aged and used in conditions not originally designed for.

  16. IMHO, Without the rehulling RMN could never be able to afford a ‘proper’ warship like LMS2 but would get newer & numberous but unfortunately gun only boat instead or they be force to reduce the amount of hull like most modern navies.

    14 warships is quite a sizable numbers since the french & Aussie is planning for 15 & 12 respectfully.

    RMN can’t be everywhere and do everything thus It’s probably better to empower MMEA to deal with non state actor in the Sulu sea & SOM while RMN concentrate more on state actor in the SCS.

  17. Again I enjoyed reading the comments from all of you. I still think RMN wanted a multi purpose modular design whereby a single or 2 modules (or ISO container) could be mounted on the ship base on the mission required.

    Again the role of LMS is to do the jobs same as LCS but not needing an LCS (EEZ patrols, escorts, air surveillance, counter piracy for example) and also jobs that LCS could not do (Mine counter measure, hydrography for example).

    So what does latest LMS spec says?
    – around 1800~2500ish tones give or take
    – 28 knots
    – NSM antiship missiles
    – Manpads/SHORADS
    – guns

    So this spec ticks all the boxes for the first kind of jobs I mentioned (jobs same as LCS but not needing an LCS) but not the second one. Now this did made some of you guys mad about. So RMN is sacrificing 1 part of the job may be due to it need more potent surface combatant just in case LCS go down (back then they were not sure yet okay). SO LMS2 may have some capability to overlap with LCS to supplement the low number of LCS we are getting in future (6 only and not 12 due to you know why).

    Unfortunately RMN did not mention anything on modularity so does RMN did not need modularity at all in LMS? Well MY THEORY suggest that RMN does not need LMS2 to not have modularity because RMN think it had enough ships for the modularity. What ships are those you might ask? Well its LMS1!! Let say for LMS2 you need modularity just for the the jobs LCS can’t do (mine countermeasure and hydrography) but you already have 4 new ships that could such task, so do you still need another 8 to do so? Maybe not. So you have 4 LMS that can do the jobs that LCS cant do and another 8 that LCS can do ( AHAA surprised none of you ever mentioned this right?). Plus this will lead to NO NEED for Kedah (unless they go for Kedah for LMS2 haha) as well!! I think its a well planned compromise.

    In short, its not the most ideal plan, it did not exactly follow all 15-5 plan, but its the best plan for the current situation which is highly likely no follow up LCS and lesser budget that what was intended. Its the best plan with the amount of money RMN think they might have for current and next RMK. Sorry for the long essay, tell me what you guys think.

  18. Luqman,

    The LMS originally wanted by RMN to do
    http://pictr.com/images/2022/05/17/BKLjvO.jpg
    Primary tasks
    – patrol and show of presence
    – SAR
    – maritime enforcement
    – surveillance
    – intelligence gathering
    – reconnaissance
    Plus future modules and upgrades for
    – surface to surface missiles
    – HADR
    – mine warfare and hydrographic survey
    – extended aerial surveillance (UAV)

    Of you look at the primary tasks, it is basically the mission of a Coast Guard aka the MMEA.

    The really “NAVAL” tasks are with the future modules and upgrades.

    As for the current Chinese built LMS 68.
    http://www.bhic.com.my/doc/LMS.pdf

    2x TEU (20 foot equivalent unit) container locations behind the 2x RBB (Rigid Buoyant Boat) plus one more on on the superstructure. The space is quite tight to do deployment and recovery operations of UUVs and ROVs that can go far from the LMS, as the steel hulled ship should not near or inside a minefield like a GFRP vessel like a proper MCMV.

    It would be a tight fit to operate all at the same time in a single LMS 68.
    http://pbs.twimg.com/media/DU4Dt26VMAIMss-.jpg

  19. 5Zaft – ”Without the rehulling RMN could never be able to afford a ‘proper’ warship like LMS2”

    ”Without the rehulling” and other things the FACs and Laksamanas can’t continue in service and there would be a large capability gap. The FACs were supposed to have been fully upgraded in the 1990’s and the Laksamanas [for reasons widely known and discussed] not bought at all. It’s the fault of the penny pinching government.  

    5Zaft ”they be force to reduce the amount of hull like most modern navies.”

    Running at bare minimum as it is…. Any more ”reductions” and we must as well downgrade the RMN into a paramilitary entity or have it absorbed into the MMEA.. Also;
    ”most modern navies” are downsizing [or were] but are making up for the reduction in numbers by improvements in other areas….

    5zaft – ”14 warships is quite a sizable numbers”

    When you take into account the length of the coastline; size of our territorial waters and EEZ and the fact that at any given time ‘X’ number of ships will be undergoing refits or routine maintenance; 14 is not ”a sizable number”….

    5Zaft – ” since the french & Aussie is planning for 15 & 12 respectfully.”

    Both countries have larger navies; much more air assets; unmanned air assets; greater integration of land/air/based sensors, etc ……. Apples to oranges comparison.

    5Zaft – ”everything thus It’s probably better to empower MMEA to deal with non state actor in the Sulu sea & SOM”

    What looks good on paper and what’s possible in reality are two profoundly different things. The MMEA doesn’t even have enough assets to maintain a significant 24/7 hour presence in the Spratlys and it’s hamstrung by various ships which are old and heavy on maintenance; plus unsuitable seakeeping. On top of that it’s badly under resourced and needs significant improvements in shore support infrastructure.

    On paper and in a perfect world the police’s GOF battalions should be the main entity in ESSCOM but for a variety of reasons; including turf guarding and the fight for funding; this is not the case. In a perfect world the Marine Police would have been absorbed into the MMEA as was the plan years ago; the MAF and MMEA adequately resourced, etc but alas we don’t live in a perfect world do we…

  20. Luqman,

    ” Not sure though what was inside those modules, maybe they are just dummies for display”

    When you sail your new boat back from the shipyard, especially foreign-based, plenty of stuff you need to bring back with the ship. For example consumable spare parts that is paid for in the contract, shore support items for the ship like calibration jigs etc, all the paperwork and files from the project to be kept back at base and even personal belongings of project staff when working at the shipyard. Those things are put into those containers you see in the picture.

  21. Luqman

    A lot of warships design these day like the sigma are multimodal in nature & have iso container space under the helipads. Not sure how much iso it could carry but the meko patrol Corvette design could carry up to 6.

    MCM operation in the near future don’t require a dedicated ship as it relied on UAV,UUV & USV that can be loaded up to any vessel of opportunities. So any ship that carry FIC with sizable hanger, helipad can in theory operate MCM. The sigma again seem to be able to do it.

    The sigma model middle section cutaway at DSA is also interesting. Seem like the DDX, there’s a reserve space for future upgrades.

    Also the number of ship in the original 15 to 5 is a bit misleading, if we look at it acquisition timetable graphics we find out that the 2 submarines,6 LCS, 6LMS, 6 NGPC are a replacement of ship they built early rather than an addition. The original 15 to 5 would only have 2 submarines, 6 LCS, 12 LMS & 12 NGPC at any given times. So about 30 ish surface fleet.

    My theory is that both ngpc & lms budget & requirements is merge into 1 hull and the shortfall of ship under the new plan is achieve by rehulling their older ship

  22. All this talk about hulls does not actually address the real issue here.

    There is 2 important but distinct scenarios that the services need to cover.

    Our overall maritime security needs to be prepared for 2 Scenarios

    Scenario 1.
    – Peacetime maritime enforcement, freedom of economic activity, freedom of navigation and upholding the rule of law based on UNCLOS. This is the main tasks of MMEA.

    Scenario 2.
    – Wartime operations, and deterrence in peacetime to prevent war. This is the main tasks of RMN.

    All the rehulling, refit, even the elbow grease RMN is pouring to resurrect 2 more Vospers to life (Ex Sundang and Ex Panah) is to enable proper maritime security of malaysian waters and EEZ in scenario number 1. Is those efforts needed? Yes of course for now. Would those ships be useful in scenario number 2? No, which is not good for RMN, but is totally fine if it is operated by MMEA.

    This is the main point when we discuss about ships, no matter they are old, new, LMS, or whatever. This is something many does not take into account when discussing about ships.

    Which comes back to what I have talked from the beginning.

    – RMN should not plan its future around ships that are built mainly to cover the requirements of Scenario 1. Future RMN ships should be designed with Scenario 2 in mind as the main requirement, that could also be used in Scenario 1. My main opinion since the beginning is that, what RMN currently plans for LMS Batch 2, which is to be a 185+ million dollar conventional Corvette cannot contribute in any meaningful way or even survive in future Scenario 2, in light of the many advances in the way to kill surface ships.

    – For Scenario 1, we should buy ships that could specifically execute scenario 1 with good acquisition and operational cost. You should not buy expensive 185+ million dollars LMS to mainly do Scenario 1 missions. Better buy dedicated for Scenario 1, 60 million dollar DAMEN OPV1800 operated by MMEA instead, and get 3 OPVs for the price of 1 LMS conventional Corvette. Ships dedicated for Scenario 1 should be operated for just that. If scenario 2 happens, ships of Scenario 1 would be restricted to port, and that would be totally fine. Which is why RMN should have ships that can really do Scenario 2.

    – RMN needs to plan its future not to “help” MMEA to undertake Scenario 1 missions by buying dedicated ships for Scenario 1 (like LMS batch 1 and Ops Benteng FICs), but to really get ships that can execute Scenario 2 to the best of its ability. Which is for me, 2-4 more Scorpene Submarines, completing the 6 Gowinds to 100% of the original required specifications, getting 4 more large frigates with more missile loadouts (the Type 31e would be good) to replace the Lekiu and Kasturi, and around 2 dozen of cheaper (less than 35 million dollars), smaller (50+ meters), faster (28-30 knots) LMS ships that can really do shoot and scoot anti-ship missions, MCM, and even ASW support to the Gowinds. In worse case Scenario 2 situation where we don’t have any superiority over our waters and airspace, those 4-6 Scorpenes would be the best option that the RMN have to take the fight to a much more superior naval and airforce adversary. Which is why I am against RMN wasting money on 8x 185+ million dollar LMS conventional Corvettes, when buying additional Scorpene submarines with that budget would give RMN much better capability in Scenario 2.

  23. Im unsure if LMS2 will even have MCM. It certainly not mentioned on their speclist during DSA, so whether the ship class intended will need to have MCM function is questionable.

  24. Hopefully we can see the Ex Panah and Ex Sundang operational by the end of the year.

    RMN passed the 2 boats to MMEA in August 2005

    RMN got back the 2 boats in 10 Jun 2020 from MMEA

    Now both of the ships is in refit (New Refit Innovation Project) at MSET Shipyard Kuala Terengganu

    RMN would be operating four Vosper patrol boats in 2022, with the average age of 60 years for each boat, all 4 Vosper boats could see 70 years of service soon.

  25. gonggok – ”My main opinion since the beginning is that, what RMN currently plans for LMS Batch 2, which is to be a 185+ million dollar conventional Corvette cannot contribute in any meaningful way or even survive in future Scenario 2, in light of the many advances in the way to kill surface ships.”

    Based on that we shouldn’t buy anything because they are ‘many advances” in many areas; i.e. air to air configured UASs; supercavitating torps; hypersonic missiles [which you’ve alluded to numerous occasions]; AI, etc. In the real world whether a LMS or anything else can survive will depend on whether it’s operating alone; the level of SA/networking; the onboard defences it has, etc.

    If one follows your logic even a Type 45 or a Kirov can’t survive; let
    alone a LMS [or ”corvette” if one is pedantic] operated my a small under resourced navy]; in certain conditions. Why buy F/A-50s as they can’t survive in engagements against a F-15 or F-35 and why buy UASs as they can easily be spoofed and have zero protection?

    In the real world depends on the type of conflict; who the opponent is and a host of various other factors – not adopting the simplistic attitude that something can’t automatically survive. What type of conflicts will we face; what types can we realistically handle; should procurement be threat or capability driven; should threat assessments be based on intentions as we perceive them or actual capabilities; etc?
    I’m more worried about out undersea internet cables being cut and our radars, radios, GPSs, cell phones; SATCOM and power infrastructure being targeted by EW/cyber attacks as a prelude or alternative to war.

  26. Azlan,

    You still do not get it.

    We ie. Malaysia should plan our defences to the best of our abilities and to our resources based on scenarios that we should realistically prepare for.

    We need to juggle the need to prepare for the best for both Scenario 1 and Scenario 2.

    In Scenario 1, the best value to do this properly is to give MMEA the proper resources (which is not much actually) to do its mission, and stop wasting precious resources for RMN to do Scenario 1 missions.

    In Scenario 2, we need RMN to fully optimise whatever resources that it has (budget, manpower etc.) to be able to fight back any nations that wages war on Malaysia. No buts or ifs. You don’t hear Finland making excuses not be able to fight Russia, or Vietnam making excuses against China. Like Indonesia motto of “NKRI harga mati” our defences need to be the same. With Scenario 1 to be managed mainly by MMEA, Scenario 2 must be taken on by RMN with the best possible equipments. Against a much more powerful Navy, which option would be more capable for us to fight back, buy 8 fully armed LMS Batch 2 Corvettes or buy 2-4 more Scorpene Submarines? It costs the same. That is the main thing to ponder. We cannot afford to waste any more resources to create a subpar navy.

    The real world in Scenario 1, should be managed by MMEA, with adequate numbers of cost effective OPVs and Medium Patrol Vessels. In worse case scenario 2, RMN without sea or air superiority would use submarines to strike back at the enemy, impervious to many new advances that is designed to kill surface ships. RMN must have the option to fight it alone without the direct involvement of other countries, and submarines is by far the best option, when compared to Corvettes. If the war is actively fought by major powers that are allied to Malaysia, then our surface warships could be a part of their task forces. Any other conflicts between neighbours should be solved diplomatically first, but MMEA and low cost 50m LMS would be sufficient, supported by UAVs and other systems.

    ” I’m more worried about out undersea internet cables being cut and our radars, radios, GPSs, cell phones; SATCOM and power infrastructure being targeted by EW/cyber attacks as a prelude or alternative to war ”
    Wasting billions of dollars on Fully Armed Corvettes isn’t going to solve any of your worries listed above.

  27. gonggok – ”All this talk about hulls does not actually address the real issue here”

    Like certain other claims; not really true and of course you are addressing the issue? The ”hulls” are badly needed [even if you personally disagree] and the RMN [yes the people who know a bit about the subject matter] after long deliberation has decided that the LMSs will form a vital component of its fleet.

    gonggok – ”You should not buy expensive 185+ million dollars LMS to mainly do Scenario 1 missions. ”’

    To state the plainly obvious the LMS Batch 2s are not being bought primarily or mainly do Scenario 1 – poppycock. The nuances; the LMSs are to perform various wartime roles [we know what they are] in specific conditions but at the same time [like every other asset] they will also have a peacetime tasking but [again] their peacetime taskings are not the main reason they are being bought and are a separate issue from their wartime taskings.

    The Cougars and A400Ms have a wartime tasking and peacetime ones. Both carry out various peacetime taskings on a regular basis; is someone going to make the spurious and silly claim that we bought them not for peacetime taskings thus they should only be used for military/wartime taskings?

    gonggok – ” In worse case Scenario 2 situation where we don’t have any superiority over our waters and airspace, those 4-6 Scorpenes would be the best option that the RMN have to take the fight to a much more superior naval and airforce adversary.”

    Not as simplistic as that and you know it. We simply can’t assume that the operational circumstances will be conducive for subs. If an enemy has air superiority and can deploy ASW airborne freely; this has a major impact on our subs. If an enemy has surface units in the area which are screened by a ASW escort and also has its own subs in the area looking for our subs; this becomes somewhat problematic. We haven’t even gone into UAVs, mines, under water sensors and other things which can negate the effectiveness of our subs or prevent them from doing their job.

    Many factors at play [as has been discussed to death]; one can’t adopt the simplistic notion that just because subs are ”stealthy” that this guarantees they can operate where other assets can’t or can perform more effectively.. Note the key lesson we learnt from WW1/WW2/Cold War and various other conflicts: a sub which is too busy avoiding detection can’t focus on its job and a sub operating on its own against a enemy which has control of the surface and air an can deploy ASW assets without interference is at a severe disadvantage ….. Yes subs have advantages and yes they can have am impact far out of proportion to their actual numbers and yes I’m highly aware of the Falklands [I actually had a brief chat with Chris Wreford Brown during a talk he gave at the sub museum many years ago] but we have to look at things in totality; not just things we think or would like to think are accurate.

    gonggok – ”when buying additional Scorpene submarines with that budget would give RMN much better capability in Scenario 2.”

    The reality is that there is no current requirement for subs; the requirement has not even be approved and the requirement is for LMSs to finally replace the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs. Even if we were suddenly flushed with cash; the government would proceed very cautiously and slowly with subs; no thanks to the political fallout from the controversies surrounding the Scorpenes.

  28. gonggok – ”RMN passed the 2 boats to MMEA in August 2005”
    gonggok – ”RMN got back the 2 boats in 10 Jun 2020 from MMEA”

    The RMN was extremely happy to hand them to the MMEA and the MMEA was extremely happy to hand them back. The MMEA would complain that it was getting aged and over worked assets but what else could the RMN have given and fault lies with the government. Feasibility plans during that period also looked at handing over the Laksamanas; an indication of unhappy the RMN was with the class as far back as more than a decade ago.

  29. Azlan,

    “the requirement is for LMSs to finally replace the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs. Even if we were suddenly flushed with cash”

    The original LMS requirement includes replacing the Mahamiru MCMV (those glassfiber hulls pushing 40 years old now) and also the FTV.

    But the original LMS requirement also expects all the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs to be retired when all the LMS is built, with the LMS Batch 1 explicitly bought to replace the Laksamana Corvettes 1 to 1. Currently that is not happening, and with all the extensive refits to all of the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs, all of them are to be operated up till 2035 at least.

    The current 8x Corvette LMS Batch 2 project does not solve the issue of how to replace the Mahamiru MCMV capability.

    8x Corvette LMS Batch 2 is to cost RM 6.6 billion in total up to 2030.

    – 1. Should we spend RM6.6 billion on ships now that actually does not need to be replaced till 2035? (the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs). With the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs not retired, rather than moving the current manpower over to the LMS Batch 2 (and Gowinds), RMN actually need to recruit more manpower, along with the increased operational costs.

    – 2. Should the RM6.6 billion be spent before 2030 on hardware that would give a significantly different capability than the Gowinds and the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs? Such as at least 2 more Scorpenes?

    – 3. Could the Scenario 1 mission that would be done by LMS Batch 2 instead be covered by 8 more MMEA OPVs instead? SIGMA 9113 has a displacement of 1700 tonnes. That is not a lot of difference to the DAMEN OPV 1800 that MMEA is building. Buying 8 DAMEN OPV 1800 for example costs less than RM 2 billion ringgit. The budget for 8 Corvette LMS Batch 2 is enough to pay for 2 Scorpenes + 8 DAMEN OPV 1800, of which the overall capability is massively better for both Scenario 1 and Scenario 2 than the 8 Corvette LMS Batch 2. Same amount of budget, so no need to wait till we are flushed with cash, just the current planned budget to 2030 will do.

  30. gonggok – ”with all the extensive refits to all of the FACs, Laksamanas and remaining PCs”

    ”Extensive”? I’ll do you the courtesy of again pointing out that everything that was done is the absolute bare minimum in order to keep them operational for a few years. Nothing ”extensive” as you claim.

    gonggok – ” Should we spend RM6.6 billion on ships now that actually does not need to be replaced till 2035?”

    Tell anyone in the RMN who has actual experience on both classes and who know their issue that and tell laugh…. Never mind what’s on paper; the plan is not to operate them until 2035 but to progressively replace them as the LMS Batch 2s enter service.

    gonggok – ”The current 8x Corvette LMS Batch 2 project does not solve the issue of how to replace the Mahamiru MCMV capability.”

    Apparently not but it does enable the retirement of the FACs and Laksamanas which despite certain upgrades really need replacing and still have inherent issues.

    gonggok – ”RMN actually need to recruit more manpower, along with the increased operational costs.”

    Really; not too long ago you were all gung ho about the MMEA getting new assets [including stuff it has no requirement for] but seemed oblivious to the fact that to cater for an expansion the MMEA needs more manpower and a better shore support infrastructure.

    gonggok – ” Such as at least 2 more Scorpenes?”

    gonggok – ”The budget for 8 Corvette LMS Batch 2 is enough to pay for 2 Scorpenes + 8 DAMEN OPV 1800, of which the overall capability is massively better for both Scenario 1 and Scenario 2 than the 8 Corvette LMS Batch 2.’

    Whilst you’re at it why not say it’s better to buy GPMGs than LMGs or something as silly as there is no need top buy MBTS as MRAPS or IFVSs can be bought? You are conflating things; ignoring that there is such a thing as ”requirements”; that the LMSs are needed for highly essential; reasons [unless you know better than the RMN as to what it needs] and that there is no ‘better”; maybe in your mind and in PowerPoint briefs but not in reality. Different things ae needed for different reasons; each complementing each other.

    I know you’re all gung ho/memorised and feeling invigorated at the mention of subs [which aren’t a panacea]; I love them too but there is no present requirement or subs and won’t be for a long time. To keep insisting on subs; must as well insist we but ICBMS or that certain public figures get a lobotomy.

  31. @gonggok

    IMHO. No one wage war for the sake of waging war. There’s need to be a strategic objective be it political or economical national interest to warrant the use of force to secure those objective and the benefits of gaining those objective must be more than the cost incurred to secure it.

    If we are talking about warfare. Then we can on general divide it onto 3.

    1.total war
    Like what happened currently in Ukraine

    2,coercion
    Like when Russia send troops to the border to force a political concession or the western & PRC use of sanctions & boycott

    3.fait accompli
    Like when Russia annexed Crimea or the PRC with paracel & Scarborough for it’s strategic location.

    Not saying we shouldn’t plan for scenario 1. But the latter 2 are more frequent incident then scenario 1. any defense plan shouldn’t only priorities ability to respond to only scenario 1 without having any ability to respond to the latter 2. But the later 2 has a nasty habit of escalating into senario 1 thus anyone who respond to latter 2 must have a plan for when it eventually escalated into scenario 1.

    Am not saying that type 31 with it 2000km long range radar that can detect ICBM or submarines didn’t matter or more gun only OPV doesn’t matter. If anything those can be procured after the LMS2 & MRSS and the navy chief himself said the submarines would be in the plan by 2030 nor would the gov going to let BNS lumut without any more jobs after the LMS2.

    But right now, if we talking about risk. Then coercion is sometimes we already are experiencing while fait accompli could be next. There’s are some time to go before a total war could happen as the attackers themselves need to be ready to insulate themselves from supplies chain distribution, sanctions & boycott that going to happen when they decide to attack. But If we failed to respond towards the coercion & fait accompli now then we already lost some ground to the enemy that would be use against us when total war happened.

  32. 5zaft – ”MCM operation in the near future don’t require a dedicated”

    Depends on who you ask. If you ask MCM people in the RMN [I have] none are convinced modular payloads are the answer; for a variety of reasons. The same opinion is shared with people in the USN’s MCM community as well as various other navies who are convinced a proposed built MCMV is still essential. Depends on who you ask – no right/wrong or black/white. Modular payloads are either a compromise or a solution but not a panacea. Works for some; not for others.

    gonggok – ”RMN needs to plan its future not to “help” MMEA to undertake Scenario 1 missions by buying dedicated ships for Scenario 1 (like LMS batch 1 and Ops Benteng FICs), but to really get ships that can execute Scenario 2”

    In the real world navies are required to perform a variety of tasks. By your logic the RMN should devote all its resources towards acquiring and improving its warfighting abilities but in actuality it can’t; neither can the USN or any other navy. All militaries have peacetime taskings and in the case of the RMN if it didn’t assist or supplement the MMEA nobody else would be able to do it. As for the FICS; as explained to someone else previously they were funded ostensibly for Benteng but doesn’t mean they will only be deployed under Benteng and never for anything else.

    You’re fixated about the RMN ”helping” the MMEA but this is unrealistic as the RMN has it hands full focusing on its own needs and is in fierce competition with its sister services for funding; you seriously think it has time and energy to lobby for a non military entity? Rather than the RMN ”helping’ the MMEA should ”help” itself to make a greater case and lobby for the funds it needs. It’s also not as if the RMN wants to divert funding away from the MMEA or is reluctant for the MMEA to fully assume its responsibilities.

    gonggok – ”You still do not get it.”

    So you and only you ”get it”?

    gonggok – ”to the best of our abilities and to our resources based on scenarios that we should realistically prepare for.”

    Like other countries the armed services here plan and factor in a variety of contingencies but are only able to focus on a select few and those it can realistically handle; in line with resources and inherent limitations a country our size with our economy has.

    gonggok – ”In Scenario 2, we need RMN to fully optimise whatever resources that it has (budget, manpower etc.) to be able to fight back any nations that wages war on Malaysia. No buts or ifs. You don’t hear Finland making excuses not be able to fight Russia, or Vietnam making excuses against China. Like Indonesia motto of “NKRI harga mati”

    Spare me the nationalistic chest thumping. The MAF knows fully well what they are supposed to do in line with their obligations and nobody is making ”excuses” – the only person who mentioned ”excuses” was you.

    gonggok – ”Wasting billions of dollars on Fully Armed Corvettes isn’t going to solve any of your worries listed above.”

    Hyping about hypersonic missiles which aren’t even in service; making apples to oranges claims/comparisons in line with your narrative and making sweeping generalised claims without factoring in the context and nuances gives a misleading picture. Great for a fan boy audience but not beyond that.

    Also your subs aren’t also the answer for issues we have; are not a panacea, are not a wunderwaffe and aren’t very useful in peacetime BTW…. In case you forgot stuff we buy mostly has both a peacetime and wartime tasking; subs [as great as they are] are mostly useful in wartime and as you saw fit to point our previously; most of the time we aren’t at war.

    gonggok – ”The real world in Scenario 1, should be managed by MMEA, with adequate numbers of cost effective OPVs ”

    In the real world militaries worldwide [yet you’d make it sound only the MAF does] have peacetime taskings in support of other agencies and as part of a national strategy. As it stands [again] the MMEA is unable to fully assume all its roles and the RMN is the only agency which can assist – unless there’s a shadowy entity the rest of us aren’t ware of but you [naturally are].

    gonggok – ”our surface warships could be a part of their task forces.”

    I deal with reality; as part of a coalition with Tier 1 partners; our assets would mainly be operating on the periphery or supporting role because we’d be a hindrance otherwise; we simply don’t have the capabilities to bring to the party.

    gonggok – ”RMN without sea or air superiority would use submarines to strike back at the enemy, impervious to many new advances that is designed to kill surface ships.”

    We simply can’t assume that the operational circumstances will be conducive for subs. If an enemy has air superiority and can deploy ASW airborne freely; this has a major impact on our subs. If an enemy has surface units in the area which are screened by a ASW escort and also has its own subs in the area looking for our subs; this becomes somewhat problematic. We haven’t even gone into UAVs, mines, under water sensors and other things which can negate the effectiveness of our subs or prevent them from doing their job. Many factors at play.

    gonggok – ”Against a much more powerful Navy, which option would be more capable for us to fight back, buy 8 fully armed LMS Batch 2 Corvettes or buy 2-4 more Scorpene Submarines?”

    Again; depends on the operational context; i.e. the nature of the conflict….I know you have a penchant for simplistic statements but it depends on the context; there is no one size fits all solution. Your subs; to be effective; would also need to work alongside other assets to be effective; not on their own… Also; there is no requirement for subs but there is a requirement for LMSs to finally replace various aged assets and to supplement the LCSs. No requirement at present for subs.

  33. 5Zaft – ”If we are talking about warfare.”

    People tend to get all nationalistic and fan boyish about China but we don’t have a chance against China; not even if we adopted all the asymmetric tactics possible and raised the budget ten fold. The reality is that if trouble started with China our first concern would be the economy and various non kinetic means which can be employed against us. If missiles actually started flying we’d be part of a coalition playing a periphery role as we simply don’t have the capabilities to be part of Team A.

    The MAF is not structured or equipped for a protracted high intensity war; lacks the equipment and the means to sustain itself. In a protracted fight we’d be hard pressed to even replace combat losses as we don’t have a larger military to begin with; we don’t have a large pool of reservists and we don’t induct large numbers of recruits annually. We are also a small to medium sized economy with a relatively small population; dependent on the outside world for most of our defence needs and some 70 percent of our food and lack a high tech industrial base. We can do all the patriotic chest thumping we want; say we ‘can’ do this and that [on paper] and look at things from a narrow perspective [in lin with personal narratives/illusions] but the reality is such. As a caveat [because some have tendency to form their own rash conclusions]’ no I’m not suggesting we lie down and open up our legs for any aggressor but we have to be realistic, to look at things in context and not get carried away. Contrary to the illusion some have; our defence planners understand what we can or can’t realistically achieve; know fully well what’s needed and can ”think out of the box”.

    Amidst all this fixation with China the fact remains we have longstanding unresolved overlapping claims with a number of neighbouring countries and unlike the case with China; things have become ”hot” with certain neighbouring countries before.

    5Zaft – ” if we talking about risk.”

    – Should procurement be capability or threat driven?
    – Should threat assessments be based on intentions as we perceive them or on actual capabilities others have?
    – How do we progress when we are hampered by a decades long highly flawed self defeating politically driven defence policy; based on the premise we won’t actually be at war and that priority has to be placed on the local industry and other national interests rather than ensuring the end user gets a level of capability and the taxpayer their cash’s worth?

  34. “There is no plan for MCM for the LMS, 1 or 2”
    The MCM modules would be needed for the MCMV purpose when the Mahamirus are retired. If the LMS2 are to come without MCM function then only LMS1 can replace them or else going back to purpose built MCMVs.

  35. @gonggok
    Just to put things into context, even if we bought 4 more subs for a total fleet of 6, it would be facing against a force of 42 SSKs and 2 SSNs. So how much of a threat your much vaunted undersea force will be anyways? Just think about it. If we are fighting against a well drilled superpower, there is little we can do to stop it.

    Regarding more LMS vs more subs, in 15to5Plan there is a requirement for 2 more subs, yes, but it is lower priority for more surface ships. Let’s look at it from the stakeholders PoV.
    For TLDM they need more ships not only to recapitalise their fleet, but for patrols, enforcement, training, and show of presence, all which cannot be done effectively with subs.
    From the Govt PoV, the sub buy is a political landmine. You can see how much it was politicised til today, from being ridiculed it cannot dive, to the on/off saga of a certain person of interest’s demise. Remember that these subs are built at OEM yard not in Malaysia so you can see all that bugbear and risk without any such political gimmick that building surface ships locally would give them ie job creation, economic benefits, votes, etc.

  36. @Gonggok
    Firstly, thank you for listing all the “primary task” and other task for LMS. Well another way to look at it the primary task of all LCS, Lekiu, Kedah, Laksamana, FAC are also the same with some additional specialty task to each of them just like LMS. So based on your logic, RMN also do not need LCS, Lekiu, Kedah, Laksamana and FAC as well.

    “LMS Batch 2, which is to be a 185+ million dollar conventional Corvette cannot contribute in any meaningful way or even survive in future Scenario 2”
    Okay fine say we admit LMS2 not suited and cannot survive Scenario 2, let me ask you, do you even think our tiny puny little cute 3100 tons LCS can even survive Scenario 2?? Even the larger Russian Admiral Essen was hit by subsonic Neptune missile though not sink (Lots of evidence pointed out she was indeed got hit). So by your logic we need Arleigh Burke sized ship to survive Scenario 2 or even a Ticonderoga right?? By that logic even a fully equipped Jose Rizal cannot survive Scenario 2 right (because Jose Rizal is an LMS2 by spec)?

    @5Zaft
    You and @joe might be right, LMS2 spec is essentially also Kedah spec so RMN may finally combine LMS and NGPV to just 1 hull. Comparing the images of Tun Fatimah and Damen 9113, there are spaces for might be mission modules so you may also be correct there.

  37. Azlan,

    “– Should procurement be capability or threat driven?”
    Both.
    Scenario 1
    MMEA should be able to have OPVs out 365 days in a year at multiple strategic points in our EEZ (capability) to keep in check illegal fishing, illegal immigration and preventing other coast guards from harassing malaysian economic activity (threat)
    Scenario 2
    RMN should be able to have at least at all times 2x Gowinds out at sea for ASW surveillance and patrols, at least 1x Scorpene for deterrence patrol, 6x other vessels (like my proposed smaller LMS) for patrol (capability) to keep track of the movements of all Chinese and other military units (submarines, ships, aircrafts) within our waters and EEZ, also beyond that (threat)

    “– Should threat assessments be based on intentions as we perceive them or on actual capabilities others have?”
    Both, depending on which country it is, and depending on their threat level to Malaysia.
    Example
    Vietnam – threat level low, capability high
    Singapore – threat level low, capability very high
    Indonesia – threat level medium, capability on par
    Philippines – threat level medium, capability low
    Thailand – threat level low, capability on par
    China – threat level high, capability very high
    Australia – threat level allies, capability very high
    By the above assessment, we should be able to plan for our defence needs. We also should get our neighbors like Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam to be treated by us like allies, and not a low level threat.

    “– How do we progress when we are hampered by a decades long highly flawed self defeating politically driven defence policy; based on the premise we won’t actually be at war and that priority has to be placed on the local industry and other national interests rather than ensuring the end user gets a level of capability and the taxpayer their cash’s worth?”
    Just look at what you write here. Exactly the reflection of decades long highly flawed self defeating politically driven defence policy. I on the other hand, want to see us coming out of this quagmire, with the mindset and opinions on how to get there.

    Joe,

    “For TLDM they need more ships not only to recapitalise their fleet, but for patrols, enforcement, training, and show of presence, all which cannot be done effectively with subs”
    This is why i repeatedly mentioned about the Scenarios above. It is very2 important to understand that fundemental before talking about ships etc. RMN does not need more ships. Malaysia does. It is for the defence of Malaysia. For patrols, enforcement, training, and show of presence, that is what i call Scenario 1, these can be much more effectively undertaken by purpose-built 60 million dollar OPV for MMEA, rather than be done by expensive 185+ million dollar LMS Corvette by RMN. Exactly the same mission done, but with way much lower costs, with the savings then can be used to buy Submarines for Scenario 2. This is what I have been saying all along.

    Luqman,

    “Okay fine say we admit LMS2 not suited and cannot survive Scenario 2, let me ask you, do you even think our tiny puny little cute 3100 tons LCS can even survive Scenario 2?? Even the larger Russian Admiral Essen was hit by subsonic Neptune missile though not sink (Lots of evidence pointed out she was indeed got hit). So by your logic we need Arleigh Burke sized ship to survive Scenario 2 or even a Ticonderoga right??”
    No, even Arleigh Burke sized ship will be easily targeted and hit hard by Hypersonic missiles.

    Which is why by my logic we need more submarines to be able to survive and strike back in worse case Scenario 2, where we are on our own like Ukraine is now. In case of Scenario 2 but with the direct involvement of allies, then we could use our 6x Gowinds and hopefully in future 4x Type 31e’s to operate with allied ships.

    “By that logic even a fully equipped Jose Rizal cannot survive Scenario 2 right (because Jose Rizal is an LMS2 by spec)?”
    Yes of course it cannot survive.

    Which again why I have repeatedly say that RMN need more Submarines. And which is why if we want to do patrols, enforcement, show of presence, in Scenario 1, just better to use purpose-built 60 million dollar OPV for MMEA, rather than be done by expensive 185+ million dollar LMS Corvette by RMN.

  38. Luqman – ”Even the larger Russian Admiral Essen was hit by subsonic Neptune missile though not sink (Lots of evidence pointed out she was indeed got hit). So by your logic we need Arleigh Burke sized ship to survive Scenario 2 or even a Ticonderoga right??”

    Reports indicated that the Moskva’s FCS wasn’t even switched on. We know that in the case of the Hanit and Stark the Phalanx wasn’t even on [standby mode] and the crew weren’t expecting an attack. Early warning/SA is everything.

    If a Tico or Burke was in a war zone and on alert [on paper] both [originally intended to deal with large scale Soviet missile strikes] would have a good chance [not against yet to be deployed hypersonics though] as both have VLSs with lots of reloads; have an extensive ESSM suite; have a soft kill option beyond just chaff and both would be networked with other assets [sea and air] via CEC.

  39. Luqman – ”the primary task of all LCS, Lekiu, Kedah, Laksamana, FAC are also the same with some additional specialty task to each of them”

    Slight differences. All share a common peacetime tasking [like ships of all or most navies] but all have slightly different wartime roles under slightly different operational circumstances.

    Luqman – ”let me ask you, do you even think our tiny puny little cute 3100 tons LCS can even survive Scenario 2”

    Depends on the actual circumstances of ‘Scenario 2” I suppose.

    As it stands nothing we have is intended to be used in a high intensity engagement for the reason that we don’t foresee the possibility. Everything we have is centered on the premise we face low to medium intensity non protracted conflicts. Under the right circumstances anything is vulnerable’ let alone a modestly armed LMS [or ”corvette if one is pedantic]. As it stands if the threat environment was high; the LMSs would be operating alongside other assets; thus the claim it can’t survive is spurious and simplistic. Even the LCS is not configured for a high end fight and even the ”stealthy” subs would struggle against an opponent who overmatches us.

    Luqman – ”so RMN may finally combine LMS and NGPV to just 1 hull.”

    Maybe and it should have been done from the start when under a different leadership and under a different period; the RMN years ago included follow on Kedahs in the 5/15. As it stands zero possibility of any. On the LMS Batch 1s they can’t be fully fitted out as integration would be needed; the RMN desires Western payloads and have no desire for Chinese ones even if they were available. Also, the intention is not to spend anymore cash on them to save the cash for the more urgently needed Batch 2s.

    joe – ”it would be facing against a force of 42 SSKs and 2 SSNs”

    Even if it faced a force of just 8 subs; if the opponent was able to deploy strong surface and air units; in addition to using sea mines to restrict movement and UUVs to detect the presence of our subs as they leave base; our subs would not be able to effectively operate.

    Yes; the issue of ”subs” is a very hot potato; one no government will want to touch unless it really feels politically secure; no thanks to controversies surrounding the Scorpene.

  40. gonggok – ”MMEA should be able to have OPVs out 365 days in a year at multiple strategic points ”

    [1] Did anyone say otherwise? [2] Do you know for an absolute certainty that the MMEA is not maintaining a 27/7 presence at key points? If you do actually know please by all means share with the rest of us less enlightened folks…

    gonggok – ”RMN should be able to have at least at all times 2x Gowinds out at sea for ASW surveillance and patrols, at least 1x Scorpene for deterrence patrol, 6x other vessels (like my proposed smaller LMS) ”

    Which is why the number ‘6’ arised because with 6 initial LCSs the RMN is able to be in a position where [barring unforeseen issues] 2 can be at sea at all times. Also [put to rest the dramatic stuff] our subs put to sea for training and routine deployments; not ”deterrence patrols” per see because they don’t deter anyone [at least not in a peacetime setting] and aren’t exactly armed with ICBMs or cruise missiles.

    gonggok – ”want to see us coming out of this quagmire”

    Only what you ”want”. What does everybody else here ”want” then? For things to go ratshit?

    gonggok – ”Just look at what you write here. ”

    Dear me you have a very high opinion of yourself. Maybe star off with looking at what you write and whether they’re in line with reality and facts…

    Same thing I told …; [who sang a tune remarkably similar to yours] same thing I’ll tell you : if anything I said is fundamentally incorrect please point it out and I’m sorry if I don’t make simplistic generalised assumptions based on my personal narrative.

    gonggok – ”with the mindset and opinions on how to get there.”

    Right and only you of course has the ”mindset and opinions on how to get there”. Others who don’t agree with you and who refute and point out flaws in things you say don’t have the ”mindset and opinion”? Self serving..

    gonggok – ”Which again why I have repeatedly say that RMN need more Submarines. ”

    You can ‘repeat” it till 2030 for all I care; I will ”repeatedly” say SSKs are not a one size fit it all panacea; their effective use depends on various factors and there are means others can employ to negate the effectiveness of our subs or deny them the chance to do their job…. Saying otherwise and fitting ”facts” to fit your narrative is great for a fan boy audience; nothing more beyond that.

    gonggok – ”We also should get our neighbors like Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam to be treated by us like allies, and not a low level threat.”

    How on earth can they treat us as ”allies” when there is no common/joint policy; when each country has varying defence/foreign policies and when no single country here is bound by a binding treaty? ”Partners” yes; ”allies” no. Yet you would ask others to look at what they write….

    gonggok – ” just better to use purpose-built 60 million dollar OPV for MMEA”

    In fantasy cloud cuckoo gaga land world there may be a ”better’ in the real world there isn’t. In the real world the LMSs and OPVs are two separate requirements by two different entities and even if the MMEA had 30 OPVs [I pickeu up a flair for the dramatic from you] the RMN [like most if not all navies] would still have peacetime taskings. Yet you would ask others to look at what they write….

    gonggok – ”hit hard by Hypersonic missiles.”

    By hypersonic missiles which aren’t even in service yet and won’t be for a few years yet. I know you’re well informed and all that but countries tend to have a habit of [for centuries] coming up with a counter for new stuff; whether the tank, missiles, bow/arrow or UAS..

  41. First of all I think gonggok preference force structure is too highly specialized to one specific scenario of the Chinese attempt a beach landing & proper invasion of the Malaysian mainland. Which I don’t think would bring any benefit to the Chinese at all.

    The most likely intentions of the Chinese is that they like most east asian states they are dependent on import of energy,food & resources and exportation of finished goods that mostly goes through SCS,SOM & indian ocean thus they must secure their sea lanes of communication. But securing it requires foreign shore base infrastructure of which no one willing to give to them.

    Their desire however threaten the ‘world order’ thus No one is giving it to them because the future 2nd to 5th largest economy ie India,US, Indonesia & Japan all have the same vested interest and won’t want them to have it thus no one going to sacrifice the relationship with the other 4 to pleased the Chinese alone. Thus coercion & fait accompli is the only tools in their toolbox.

    Their fragility is something MAF took advantage off as they can’t afford anything beyond coercion & fait accompli. Increasing tension in SCS would increase insurance premium that would make their export uncompetitive & inflation problem. Thus why everytime they attempt something MAF would respond in slightly higher force and called them out in public which is the last thing they wanted.

    Another tools in our toolbox is that we always maintain that SOM is our territorial water & would only respect Innocent passage right. So a fait accompli attempt on us would put PLAN in the blacklist for future use of the SOM which defeat the whole purpose of fait accompli.

    While they are capable with their WMD, the likelihood of them using it (for now) is remote because
    1) it would stop the ship from sailing & then they won’t even have enough to provide their citizen food or warms them during winter.
    2)they unlike the Russian are too connected to the world supplies chain that they can’t afford getting themselves sanctions.

    While the idea of self reliance & sovereign capabilities is noble and very patriotic. It’s unfortunate not something MAF or the gov aspired to be. Let no forget that our economy is so reliance on the successors of imperial preferential trade system that despite having Arable land we specialized on commodities to create wealth and thus import 70% of our food. Which is not bad considering palm oil generate rm1000 per month per acre while paddy make rm100 per YEAR. But that also mean we relied to whoever control the sea to defense our trade and national interest.

    So it less that MINDEF is lacking in critical thinking and being weak or are going for cookie cutters force structure. The truth is The force structure is
    1)design to have a degree of self sufficiency but never self reliance.
    2) ability to work as team B to the Team A.
    3) able to work with others team B members in collective defense.

  42. 61 percent of our navy’s vessels are already over their lifeline but still need to shoulder on..Can you guys imagine..61 percent from already small number of vessels..Yeah sure we can still repower,repack,rehull and what not..But still old is old and we should take lesson from our neighbours nanggala tragedy.

  43. @gonggok
    War is not so black & white as Scenario 1 & 2. But for your easy understanding I will explain from your PoV. Putting too much emphasis on Scenario 1 will hamper our efforts when Scenario 2 does happens. And your Scenario 2 is easily disputed; how effective would 6 Scorpenes vs 44 of their subs? Even if we are so damn good have a 7to1 kill ratio, they still overwhelm our subs, then what. I haven’t even included their MPA & ASubW resources yet ya.

    My take is a bit more grey in that both TLDM & MMEA needs to have resources to operate in Scenario 1 which would also be required to be used in Scenario 2, however ineffective they might be. TLDM cannot be just a purposely warfighting outfit, they must have a peacetime role too. As well the MMEA cannot be expected to sit in their bases if war breaks out, they must join the fight with TLDM leading. Hence why they need to have resources & ships to perform BOTH your scenarios.

    In reality, we can throw everything at China and still not hurt them enough to make it count. We can only hope they can delay the invasion to give us civvies time to get out. And please don’t hope our neighbours or ‘friendly’ superpower will come to aid us. Ukraine War taught us, their neigbours are staying out of the fight, NATO is staying out of the fight, the entire Western world are staying out of the fight. It is because Ukraine held out this long that the West could give “help” in the form of portable weapons, intel & money for them to kill each other. No NATO, no boots on the ground, no heavy weaponry, no jets. Simply put we should expect the same kind of “help” from the West if China were to take more aggressive actions in the SCS/ASEAN.

  44. 5Zaft – ”they unlike the Russian are too connected to the world supplies chain that they can’t afford getting themselves sanctions.”

    Defence wise the Russians are also dependent on a foreign supply chain. A lot of semi conductors; electronics and other things on various types of weapons/equipment is foreign sourced.

    5Zaft – ”Let no forget that our economy is so reliance”

    – Small population which is not exactly a high income one.
    – Small economy dependent on trade and exports.
    – Lack of a hgh tech industrial base.
    – Dependent on foreign sources for almost all our defence needs and some 70 percent of our food.
    – A small and under resourced MAF structured/equipped for non protracted low intensity ops. The MAF would also struggle to replace combat losses as it does not have large standing manpower levels to begin with; does not have a large pool of reservists and has a particular tooth to tail ration. It also does not have a large stockpile of consumables; whether ammo or spares.

    Yes we ”can” do this and that but the reality is this will not change. Banging the nationalistic drums and humming jingoistic tunes will not alter any realities.

  45. 5Zaft – ”Their fragility is something MAF took advantage off as they can’t afford anything beyond coercion & fait accompli.”
    5Zaft – ”Thus why everytime they attempt something MAF would respond in slightly higher force and called them out in public which is the last thing they wanted.”

    What?? Are we talking about the same MAF or situation here? I have no idea how you formed your conclusions buy you’re off the mark. The MAF rarely ”responds in slightly higher force” and hardly ”took advantage off” anything.

    The MAF; like many other militaries in the region; is in a reactive mode. It responds based on what China does; i.e. a Chinse ship is detected a RMN ship shadows it. As for ”calling them out in public” this is a political decision and in the past the government hardly mentioned anything publicly [can you point out if or when the RMAF or government has actually released QRA launched/intercepted] figures? It’s only quite recently has the government spoken out openly and authorised the armed forces to do the same; on Chinse intrusions.

    5Zaft – ”So it less that MINDEF is lacking in critical thinking and being weak ”

    No doubt some might think otherwise but defence planners are pretty aware of our strengths and limitations and what we can realistically be expected to accomplish and what we can’t.

    5zaft – ”The truth is The force structure is”

    The keep it simple and on the mark; our force structure is based on the premise that we will not be in a protracted high intensity war with anyone and that if indeed the worst occurs it won’t happen overnight but over a period of time enabling to conduct diplomatic moves/efforts and military ones. In addition to having a minimal deterrent capability [”minimal” based on the resources we invest] we also rely on diplomacy, consultations, partnerships, exchanges, dialogues and other things [ASEAN Defence Minister’s Meet; Shangri La Dialogue; Airman Talks with the USAF; Cope Taufan; RIMPAC, FPDA, CARAT, etc, etc] to enhance our security and also to maintain relationships with various countries.

  46. @azlan

    Actually I’m talking more about the economy. China is the final assembly point (it take PRC 90 cent of import from US to create $1 of export to US) and thus the factory can easily move. (Not that Chinese wages is cheap nowadays anyway) while Russia is a huge exporter of natural resources & foods. A sanctions hurt everyone on earth as energy & food bill increase. Though I guess it’s good news to the fracking industry. Not that I’m complaining, as A lot of our well is not feasible if the price is too low.

    Anyway Mr Bilahari ex ambassador at large for Singapore once said that high tech manufacturing is attained based on the whimp & fancy of US of A as they control the IP & licencing for where such manufacturing could take place. So any country wishing to break free of the middle income trap should more or less know what they should or shouldn’t do.

    While it painful to say this. I do agree with the Chinese foreign minister who is an excellent carrier diplomat by the way that PLAAF hasn’t done anything illegal under what is allowed under UNCLOS. While the media mostly report that the hawk did the intercept some keen eyes observer notice that the Sukhoi as well as RSAF AWAC plane took off and only return when it ‘over’. Off course Indonesia goes a lot further and burnt down their fishing ship. It is unfortunate but a necessacity i guess. One can’t stop china unless they willing to risk escalation & it’s probably easier decision by MY & ID then PH & VN as their ‘core’ is far away from the conflict area.

    While it’s true we are incapable of waging war. So does china. while they makes their own food they imported 70% of fertilizer to makes those food while importing 85% of energy.

    And yes the preferred force structure is basically a minimum Essential force, a balance multi spectrum capabilities that can meet any threats but not necessarily able to sustain it which either mean quick diplomatic effort for de escalation or foreign support or/and resupplies.

    The resupplies part is why the nationality of defense vendors is extremely important. There’s not going to be a long lists of country going to take our tiny economy sides at the risk of them losing access to the Chinese market. What good a multi billion ringgit ship or jet if the vendor refused to rearmed it during a conflict? If anything we want a vendor that just ‘gifts’ us those missile & parts. I hope this answers the often asked questions of why MAF don’t just buy cheap* stuff from that, these or those countries.

  47. 5Zaft – ”While it painful to say this.”

    Let put things in perspective. China regularly intrudes in our EEZ but then the areas it intrudes in is disputed and not recognised by anymore. By right even FON sailings practiced by the USN are technically ”intruding”; whether in waters we claim or in waters claimed by others. Take note that despite all the huu hafd about China [and yes a lot of what it does is alarming] things have not reached the point where hey got ”hot” but things have got ”hot” in Ambalat and others areas where we have long standing unresolved overlapping claims. if China wants to play nasty with us it can’ irrespective of what we do. Various non kinetic means; from economic to cyber to EW; are available.

    5Zaft – ”he resupplies part is why the nationality of defense vendors is extremely important. ”

    That is a argument often used to justify ”self sufficiency” and no offense but is bollocks/shite. Has it occurred to you that even if every single vendor was local that the bulk of what they’re supplying is still foreign sourced? Not only that but the vendors are still dependent on the OEMs for a lot of tech assistance and other things.

    5Zaft – ”If anything we want a vendor that just ‘gifts’ us those missile & parts.”

    Must as well also wish for Cinderella or Snow White.

    5Zaft – ” I hope this answers the often asked questions of why MAF don’t just buy cheap* stuff from that, these or those countries.”

    No it doesn’t answer the question because the conclusion you gave is incorrect.

    First of all understand that most big ticket items we buy are not driven by cost effectiveness; suitability, commonality and other things but on a host on national interests factors in which the needs of the armed services take second place … We have a certain ex PM to thank for this.

    Secondly the very notion that we should not put all our eggs in one basket is great on paper but in reality if we were embargoed by the U.S. our main concern would be the economy and the RMN; not parts for the Hornets. There is lso the fabtasy that we should buy from those who are willing to provide [paid for by the Malaysian taxpayer off course] ToTs and offsets. Problem is the majority of ToTs and offsets have not led to any tangible and come at a very heavy price.

    The state of the MAF as it stands is a reflection of years of doing things the wrong way; the expensive way and the highly politically driven way when hype is more important than substance an d when people still justify what we’re doing. We are in a deep rooted rut and can’t seem to get out of it. Most of what we’re doing is totally self defeating and yet you’re telling something that might ”answer” what we’re doing and why [things most of us here have been long aware off].

  48. On subs and the South China Sea. A lot of things have been said but we need to take a sobered approach/take on things.

    – With only 2 boats in service the RMN will be very selective in employing them; only in areas where surprise can be achieved and where they have an advantage.
    – In case of major trouble in the South China Sea things can get pretty crowded; the USN, RAN, PLAN and other navies will deploy subs there and us deploying ours there might not be conducive for their effective use.
    – The PLAN’s main focus will be on other navies; let’s not fool ourselves into thinking our 2 boats [no guarantee even that we can have one at sea at ant given time] will be the least of the problems and it doesn’t necessarily have to deploy large numbers of its own subs there.
    – Over the years China has been extensively and thoroughly mapping the area; by now it has a very good idea about the area.
    – To restrict and detect the movement of subs [whether ours or the USN’s] China already has a underwater sensor network in the area and can also deploy mines and UUVs; in addition to air and surface ASW units.
    – One does not necessarily need to sink a sub but to prevent it from doing it’s job [quite a few historical examples].
    – Despite the sub being ”stealthy” and having a major advantage; factors such as water conditions; technology, crew training and even blind luck can result in subs being easily detected. The sub doesn’t always have it it’s way.
    – Subs ; like everything else; are intended to work alongside other assets; not by their own.

  49. 5zaft – ”5Zaft – ”resupplies part is why the nationality of defense vendors is extremely important. ”

    By your logic we bought the Laksamanas because the Italians are reliable partners and we wanted to diversify from BAE Systems because we didn’t want to be too dependent on them?
    If we were embargoed the Poles would continue supplying parts for the PT-91s which the Germans wouldn’t do had we bought Leo 2s? We bought MKMs because the Russians guaranteed that whatever happens; war or embargos; that they’ll continue supplying us? If we look at the hodgepodge of stuff we have are the OEMs really reliable? What about the huge support/logistical footprint we’ve acquired?

    Ultimately if there is trouble with China it’s the U.S. we’ll depend on and at least the U.S. has stocks of AMRAAM, JDAMs and other things we use; stocked in Guam and Japan. If we need reloads for Jernas, ASTROS and Ingwe how long do you reckon MBDA, Avibras and Denel need for manufacture? How long will Rosoboronexport take to get us Adder and Archer reloads?

    The reality [despite your apparent ”answer” is we bought various things because of national interests; not national military strategic interests; ToTs; offsets, the OEM’s country opening a university here and a factory producing chips, etc. We love buying from those who are willing to provide [paid for by the Malaysian taxpayer off course] ToTs and offsets. Problem is the majority of ToTs and offsets have not led to any tangible and come at a very heavy price.

    We’d have to really screw up to be embargoed by the UN, U.S., EU and others. If we did the main concern would be the economy; not the MAF’s access to spares and other consumables.

  50. They are willing to offer the TOTs and offsets as it was mandatory to achieve the sale and it is a good way to hide payments to agents

  51. A number of deals fell through over the years beause OEMs were unwilling or unable to offer us the ToTs and offsets we desired. The Turks, Russians and French of course are ever willing; they’ve learnt long ago what we want and they have everything to gain and nothing to lose by giving us what we want.

    I have no complains if big ticket buys are also intended to benefit the country but they way we’ve gone about it is ludicrous and a total waste of funds – we stick to same disastrous course and are unable to learn fromm past mistakes. It’s the taxpayer who gets screwed;the end user ends up with stuff not suitable for requirements and most ToTs and offsets don’t achieve tangible long term benefits.

  52. @azlan

    The CCC & PLAN has every right to be there according to UNCLOS rules. While there’s are report of them ‘hindering’ our O&G operation but truth to be told it’s more of intimidating rather then actively hindering.

    I think we consider any FON as intrusion as we shiok sendiri wrote a law that says military training can’t be performed in our EEZ which is why the Chinese foreign minister called us two face. Basically an enforcement of law towards them but eyes closed towards everyone else.

    I’m not saying PLA is a friend or anything but just because we didn’t like them we should dehumanize them. the amount of assertiveness they display to us is a lot less than what they do to the Philippines & Vietnam.

    I guess advocate for self sufficiency see at India & Indonesia and think let’s do that too. But fail to realized that both are potential great power while we would never be one. Both are too drunk on their menifest Destiny that they aren’t committed to globalization. Basically they choose to be ‘poor’ to afford being resilience.

    Of course after decades of TOT. Neither India nor Indonesia is anyway close to self sufficiency as No country going to let go off a leverage nor any company would want to create their own competitors.

    IMHO, Malaysia as a whole don’t care about US embargo. Unlike a lot of our neighbors,by sheer amount of luck, the Brits actually drawn our border properly, deep inside the ‘Malay nation’ land anchor with geographically condition thus MAF never Get inward looking like a lot of our neighbors who desperately trying to glue their country together by aiming the weapon they procured at their own citizen.

    Our avoidance of US weaponry is probably more towards foreign office desire in getting as Marcon said it ‘strategic autonomy’ Aussie themselves had gone down that route before with their disastrous purchase of taipan & tiger. Off course purchased of US weaponry doesn’t exactly comes with goodies be it to a personal account nor to the country industry & economy.

    What’s the point of having a military that didn’t serve the national interest? Despite SAF motto of yang utama dan terutama. Their force structure is not too different to ours nor is Aussie force structure & number per platform is that different. Nor the military industrial policy on these 3 country is any different.

    Gowind trouble is IMHO a reflection of MY geopolitical pivot. Like I said, in peacetime there’s more than enough people wanting to sells us something but in a conflict those would be suppliers would run dry very fast.

    In normal time both mica & Exocet are more than enough infact a rojak military in itself is A ok. but if we think we would be involved in a shooting games then nothing beat commonalities ESSM & NSM. Because we could be sure the supplies of those would never run dry. Infact those resupplies might even be free of charge. Of course other countries would see such a decision as a pivot and they would act accordingly.

  53. 5Zaft – ”IMHO, Malaysia as a whole don’t care about US embargo.”

    Well ‘IMHO’ you are totally wrong – The U.S. is or was the main FDI here; it accounts for a lot of our trade; it’s still the hegemonic power in the region [one we train and have ties with more extensively that with any other; followed by Australia]; we trade mostly in USD; etc, etc. Sorry but yes the reason we have the highly flawed policy of not having all our eggs in one basket is because we don’t want to be too reliant on one supplier; Indonesia is the same; as a result of the East Timor embargo.

    5zaft – ”What’s the point of having a military that didn’t serve the national interest? ”

    Lets get this clear. The ”point” of the military is to defend the country against external threats; it’s the duty of care of the government to ensure the military has the means to do its job and if funds are not available it’s also the duty of care of the government to notify the military as to a likely timeframe when funds can be available so that the military can plan accordingly. The military doesn’t exist [irrespective of any notions you have] to ”serve national interests” by enabling political agendas and by serving as smokescreen for certain other ventures which have zero benefit to national security.

    5Zaft – ”Gowind trouble is IMHO a reflection”

    In reality is a reflection of various things which have gone horribly wrong in this country and the LCS cockup happened because the very system we have in place had all the conditions which enable it to happen.

    5zaft – ”In normal time both mica & Exocet are more than enough infact a rojak military in itself is A ok. ”

    I really have no idea what you’re on about but the reason we selected NSM is because of certain displeasure with MBDA and the fact the NSM is a gen ahead of the MM-40. As for your ”infact a rojak military in itself is A ok” you must as well tell me that having a hole in ones head is ok. Either that or it’s an attempt on your part to generate humour. The ”rojak” military we have is one with a very large support training footprint; one which as a result is expensive to sustain and one in which we are unable and have great difficulties doing various; no thanks to a former PM. Why do you think one of the priorities of CAP 55 and 5/15 is to reduce to as few as possible the number of different aircraft and ship classes to an absolute minimum? Yet you’d suggest ”a rojak military in itself is A ok”???

    5zaft – ”Our avoidance of US weaponry is probably more towards foreign office”

    Why don’t you do some asking around and your own research first before coming up with certain conclusions. It’s due to various factors; namely FMS [a lot of things can only be bought via FMS and local agents don’t have a place]; U.S. export approvals in the past; inability the U.S. to offer us certain things [if Colt was allowed to offer licensed production we’d have bought the M-4 and if NASA had trained an astronaut good chances we’d have bought SHs]; internal politics [buying U.S. gear during a period when Iraq was invaded. etc. Please don’t bring up the issue of source and object codes because nobody [not just the U.S.] readily hands them out and even if we had them it’s no that we have a use for them.

    5Zaft – ”I’m not saying PLA is a friend or anything but just because we didn’t like them we should dehumanize them.”

    Who’s ”dehuminasing ” them?? What fanboys are doing is giving the impression that we’re on the verge of a conflict with China; that there are no other threats [we have territorial issues with others which at times have gone hot – won’t say more in a public forum] and that we actually have a chance against China if we do certain things and adopt asymmetric tactics. I would also add that the Spratlys issues has actually been around for a long time [those who have long been observing defence issues are well aware] and that it’s only hit the headlines regularly for the past decade or so. Before that most had no idea about it; fan boys then were focused on the supposed Singapore threat.

    5Zaft – ” Off course purchased of US weaponry doesn’t exactly comes with goodies”

    The pros outweight the cons.

    – Most are already integrated and paid for by Uncle Sam [unlike the case with the MKMs]
    – Most are actually extensively used in real world conditions.
    – Comes with FMS which is not perfect but offers excellent product support and training.
    – Reloads are stocked in Guam and Japan and in times of emergency can be made available to others at short notice. The same is not applicable with Russian, South African and to a lesser extent European stuff.
    – We train more extensively and regularly with the U.S. military than with any other foreign military; commonality/interoperability benefits.

  54. 5zaft – ” Like I said, in peacetime there’s more than enough people wanting to sells us something but in a conflict those would be suppliers would run dry very fast.”

    Nonsense.

    – There is a long list of local companies/agents who want a piece of the cake because of the system we have in place; a system of political patronage where a lot who get contracts get so not on merit but on other factors; all based on the fact that the defence industry; the self sufficiency myth and other fantasies are a cover to gain revenue and political power.

    . Have you not read a lot of what’s been written here? You seem to be on wrong page or shooting the wrong calibre on some issues which are long and widely known.

    – As for ”suppliers would run dry very fast” in time of war; depends; if we for no reason decided to attack a neighbouring country then yes but if we were caught up in a conflict involving certain partners against a common threat then ”suppliers would” not ” run dry very fast”. Depends; look at the nuances instead of coming up with generalised statements.

    5Zaft – ”I guess advocate for self sufficiency see at India & Indonesia and think let’s do that too. But fail to realized that both are potential great power while we would never be one.”

    – Indonesia is far from becoming a great power; irrespective of its potential economy. Various things constitutes a ”great power”
    – Look at the state of the India defence industry; the infighting; bureaucracy; wastage, etc; makes ours look efficient and productive.

  55. 5Zaft – ”Neither India nor Indonesia is anyway close to self sufficiency”

    The closes that comes to self sufficiency is the U.S. India has [at great costs] become more self sufficient but like any other or most countries still relies on the outside world for much of it’s needs. Even the U.K. imports all the raw ingredients needed for ammo production. In our case self sufficiency is a myth; it’s to enable local companies to gain revenue; reward those politically favoured; to enable bragging rights and to make the politicians look good. For crying out loud we can’t even locally produce ammo which is price competitive [everything needed for production has to be imported and paid for in USA and Euro]; cheaper to buy from abroad. What ”self sufficiency”?

    5zaft – ”Their force structure is not too different to ours nor is Aussie force structure”

    Does the SAF and ADF have a tooth to tail ratio comparable to the MAF; do they have less ”heavy” or manpower intensive HQs; do their combat units have more staying power; do their premiere or main combat units have a higher level of organic signals and engineering support, etc?

    If you want to say that force structures are similar; of course; in this day and age it doesn’t vary too much; irrespective of whether Russia, Bhutan or Jamaica. The standard maneuver element being a battalion or brigade followed by a division which exercises operational and adminstrativee control under a theater or higher HQ command.

  56. @azlan

    Let me remind you that in the 2000s US with their goons goes around massacring Muslim around to the tunes of millions.

    Australia & Singapore had no problem with that and thus they continue their relationship with the US as usual. But for us. Going beyond whats minimum and be seen publicly as within the US orbit at that time would not only unpopular with the public, create civil unrest, but in the case of middle east their government decision to be friendly with the US created a lot of extremist group wanting to overthrow the “infidels” friendly monarch.

    Unlike the middle east with their iranian problem. We at that point do not face any external threats, US security guarantee is still there and they still police the sea securing our trade & even food supplies.

    Am myself not a fan of Mahathir. But Why MAF need to be strong back then regardless the cost when we have no threat at the cost of being Publicly seen to support US and get into trouble for it? What benefits does it have other then a self entitlement point of view that everything else is secondary to MAF. That the national interest is MAF.

    The wedge between us and US back then was made worse by the red dot Who wants MAF capabilities curtailed, get benefits on US investment themselves. Taking all advantage of that period geopolitics to further their own cause knowing Fully well US has no place in this region that wants to be seen as too friendly to them. But joke on them as they now getting dragged into a conflict that’s again their own self interest.

    All the talk about we want to diversify, be self reliance berdiri atas kaki sendiri afraid of US hegemonic power is nonsense. Unlike ID whose military like other in the region are fond of pew pewing their own citizen. make most of their own food, doesn’t involve much in globalization, relied on domestic consumption for economy thus everything is within the protection of TNI. How exactly is MAF going to guarantee our globalized trade, secure food supplies and be an agent of national interest far away from our shores & so on?

    The answer is they don’t.
    Malaysia for hundred of year like SG, Australia etc etc always relied on a hegemonic power to secure our national interest, to guarantee our trade and supplies of foods and to provide security

    Thus MAF like ADF & SAF is never funded or design to be the defender of our national interest. The purpose of these countries having a military is always to eventually play team B to the team A. Countries that depends on globalization & have NATO compatible equipment can’t fight one another. Remembered that the Sukhoi & pendekar is still kinda NATO compatible.

    If US ask Mahathir to jump. He’s going to answer how high. We know outside of public view he did just that.

    Comparing weapon acquisitions during peacetime and under distressed is completely pointless. In peacetime all those missile we bought would never ever leave the canister and would get expired inside the canister. the only reason it get purchase is because the other side promise counter trade in the form of factory or aerospace industry that uplift our citizens out of poverty. Again when you are poor and have no enemies. Why on earth you keep you citizen starving just to buy weapon? The reason the European are generous with those deal is because they still want us inside their western sphere of influence. The fact we get both weapon and industry is already a bonus. And this factory for weapon trade with rojak assets is still ongoing in the Philippines & Indonesia despite them actual having an enemies.

    European themselves only able to maintain their military because their military industrial complex is a provider of social benefit. Nor that their military are any useful to protect their own national interest other than just playing sidekicks to the anglo Saxon. Even the US themselves maintain their military for their political & economic interest. They did not have a powerful military just for the sake of having powerful military. If you want to sell oil but your extraction cost is high nothing better than to sponsored a war to justify worldwide sanctions that limit supplies so price would increase isn’t it?

    Procuring weapon to fight neighbors is pointless. If anything you want to convert them to the gospel of globalization & nato compatible equipment so they lost ability to wages war with us in the first place. So does self reliance and build every military equipment in house if one subscribe to the gospel of globalization, nato compatibility, liberal democracy, sugar, spice & everything nice.

    The only reason we even bothered with asset rationalization is simply because the geopolitics & geoeconomic consideration had changed. It is in the “national interest” to go with asset rationalization, there’s no other way to get out of middle income trap without increasing the efficiency of usage capital which again benefits MAF. It’s is in the national interest to create a military industrial complex again for capital usage efficiency to be both provider of public goods and military strength which benefits MAF. It is in the national interest to warm up of relationship with US. Not just for security but also for wealth As only US has the key in E&E sector to liberate us from the middle income trap which also benefits MAF.

  57. Our apprehension towards USA weapons are also due to geopolitical reasons. The SH ranks low in the MRCA fight, even lower than Typhoon, prolly due to past huuhaa with our legacy Hornet source code issue(whether real or perceived) and pricing of course. Also as not so close ally, we tend to get sensitive armaments 1 generation behind. We were not allowed to get AMRAAMs until a few years after SG got theirs which likely soured our taste for USA stuff. Even when we got the chance, ie M109, we UTurn and spurned that offer, paying a pretty penny for the cancellation.

  58. 5zaft – ”5zaft – ”Let me remind you that in the 2000s US with their goons goes around massacring Muslim around to the tunes of millions”

    ”Let me remind you” that we had no issues buying Russian when Russia was flattening Chechnya. Mahathir was asked about this. So based on your perverse it’s not kosher to get something suited for the MAF [from an operational and commonality perspective plus cost effectiveness] from the U.S. because of its policies but it’s fine to continue relying on it for direct investment, trade and security? In a previous post you mentioned ”realpolitk”; this is ”realpolitk”.
    – ‘Let me remind you” that despite whatever the U.S. was doing we actively shared [and still do] intel with on terrorism and WMDs; allowed a major increase of overflights in our airspace and trained more extensively with it than with any other country.
    – By your logic we should not buy anything from China because of their policies towards the Uighurs.
    – ”Let me remind you” that the U.S. didn’t kill millions as you inaccurately claimed; it created the conditions which led to the death of untold thousands; i.e. my doing away with Saddam it contributed to a very bloody sectarian conflict in Iraq; Sunni against Shia. In most places it was actually Muslims killing other Muslims not the ”US with their goons” as you erroneously claim.

    5Zaft – ‘the Sukhoi & pendekar is still kinda NATO compatible.”

    ”Kinda”? Even a 13th century English broadsword would be compatible by your logic. Are you even aware of the vast difficulties we faced introducing the MKs into service; not too mention that the Russians couldn’t even help us with a combat syllabus.

    5Zaft – ”How exactly is MAF going to guarantee our globalized trade, secure food supplies and be an agent of national interest far away from our shores & so on?”

    What you’re saying is no great revelation. Military planners are well aware of what the MAF can or can’t realistically do and are under no illusions. Again, the MAF is intended for certain operational contingencies and we are fully aware that in a scenario where we faced a major threat; external help would be essential.

    5zaft – ”about we want to diversify, be self reliance berdiri atas kaki sendiri afraid of US hegemonic power is nonsense. ”

    I’ll tell you what’s really ‘nonsense” : all this talk about ”self reliance” and such; precisely what the point I’ve been pressing at and a point well known and understood by others.

    5Zaft – ”national interest to warm up of relationship with US. Not just for security but also for wealth”

    Thanks for the revealing heads up but I have given you reasons why for us the U.S. continues to be our main defence; not to mention a major trade partner; one whose presence we also value and appreciate deeply.

    5Zaft – ”Thus MAF like ADF & SAF is never funded or design to be the defender of our national interest”

    Why do people come up with simplistic generalising statements? The MAF [again] is intended to defend the country against the possibility of low intensity non protracted threats; the threats we can realistically deal with and the threats we deem likely of materialising.

    5zaft – ”Procuring weapon to fight neighbors is pointless. If anything you want to convert them to the gospel of globalization & nato compatible equipment so they lost ability to wages ”’

    Spare me the idealistic gospel. If I wanted a dose of that I’d buy motivational books. What we buy is intended to enable us to have a minimal deterrent capability and to ensure we don’t get too left behind by what others are doing – period/full stop.

    5Zaft – ”US security guarantee is still there and they still police the sea securing our trade & even food supplies”

    Which is exactly what I said when you boldly claimed we were not worried about a U.S. embargo – so what is the point you’re driving at? Do you even know?

    5zaft – ”Am myself not a fan of Mahathir.”

    Didn’t think you were and even if you were it’s a matter of indifference to me. You do however seem to be blissfully oblivious to certain policies he laid out ad the disastrous effects it had on the MAF.

  59. What are you guy’s take on ada class from STM Turkey as LMS batch 2 options? Is it too overqualified or maybe too pricey..Really like Sigma designs too..Jose Rizal is a no brainer too albeit older design

  60. Sigma is already integrated with all the CMS & weapon that RMN may want but would still need to paid for the blueprint.

    Kedah May required some system integration but the blueprint is already paid for.

    Turkey is desperate for foreign cash due to their economic problems but A lot of integration of weapon & CMS needed done on that platform to suits RMN need.

    Korean are keen on pushing their CMS & weapon thus why they program usually encounter problem with what is delivered is not exactly what is promised

  61. My hypothesis is there will be 2 types of Kedah based classes as an evolution of 15to5 Plan, a Kedah LMS class as a traditional fully fitted corvette with SAM, & SSM, etc. And a Kedah NGPV class as the poorer FFBNW brother with guns only similar to existing Kedahs. Both will still have the full sensor suit and protection levels, with the thinking that Kedah NGPV class can be easily uparmed to Kedah LMS level during wartime giving us a total of 32 fully armed Kedahs plus the LCS plus whatever remaining rehulled ships.

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