SHAH ALAM: Good Times Bad Times. When the SGPV was still a developmental program, talk among the industry was that the Damen entry was the preferred the choice. The Damen entry, basically the 105-metre version of the frigates bought by Indonesia and Morrocco, in the end, lost out to the DCNS LCS, of course.
Fast forward ten years ahead, we have another Damen design competing for another RMN program, the MRSS. This time around the Damen design, the Enforcer 10000, seemed to be behind the other two competitors instead of the favourite.
The Enforcer 10000 design was highlighted at LIMA 17 though Damen was very careful not to say anything about its potential Malaysian partner. Damen, as you are all aware is working with THHE Destini for the MMEA OPV project.
At LIMA 17 I wrote that
Despite the MOU between Boustead and PT PAL, there is yet no guarantee that they will get the contract to build the MRSS. Facing off against the offering is a contender from China though it is not clear which ship or the shipyard yet.
Even without the MRSS project, Boustead order book is quite impressive. It is building six LCS for the RMN and has also signed for the LMS program with China. Under the RMN 15 to 5 project, Boustead subsidiary, Boustead Naval Shipyard, is also expected to build another six LCS and 12 more Kedah class.
It is this huge potential order book that is making tongues wagging. If and when BNS is given all the options for the new RMN fleet, it surely does not need the job to build the MRSS (though if you ask any businessman they will say otherwise).
It is for this reason, the industry is trying to get the MRSS to be built by another shipyard. That is where the Damen entry comes into play. The talk is that the Enforcer is the favourite design despite all the hype from PT Pal.
However, if the Damen design is choosen, who will be the builder then? As it is nothing is set in stone yet. With money or lack of it playing the biggest denominator, I guess we will have to wait further for the latest developments.
By the way, if we lack the money to buy Enforcer 10000, there is also the Enforcer 8000, the smallest variant of the LPD series. At 121 metres and 7000 tonnes, it is still longer and could carry more stuff than the KD Mahawangsa and KD Seri Indera Sakti.
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Actually the Makassar LPD as is ( the Indonesian or Philippines version without the malaysian requested lengthening) is already capable of carrying more stuff than the Mahawangsa. I can’t see any good reason other than to jack up the price for TLDM not to buy the Makassar class as is. The Makassar LPD was sold to the Philippines for the same price of what we are going to spend on a single small LMS boat. IMO it is better off if the MRSS based on the Makassar, be built by Petronas-owned MMHE in Pasir Gudang, at the price of usd50 million per ship. Boustead already has its plate full, give this MRSS to other players in Malaysia too.
BTW there is a chatter of another neighbouring country is buying the SU-30MKI/MKM/SME.
Its not my idea they go for another version of the Makassar class. As for the chatter for another MK buyer lets wait for them to sign contract first. Anyhow it will not do anything for our own requirements
I did not say the lengthened makassar is your idea in the first place. Where did that come from?
Im just replying about your comment on the enforcer 8000, which you say can carry more than the mahawangsa. Imo the normal length makassar also can carry more than the mahawangsa, and it is cheap too. If (that is a big if) they would look at a smaller enforcer, that would mean the original makassar should also be suitable for the task, just saying.
tabung haji engineering, perlis engineering and labuan engineering (oh wait, they part of bousted) can build mpss.
I personally, prefer damen design. that indonesian ship not only derived from ferry, but also civilian spec ship and not military spec
Tabung Haji Engineering is part of THE Destini.
Sorry to dissapoint you, but the damen enforcer design is also based on civilian standards.
Read more about the existing damen enforcer based ships, the rotterdam class, galicia class, uk and australia bay class ships.
Btw the makassar class compared to the us navy LPD
Taking this opportunity to clarify several comments above:
The Navy has a choice between commercial or naval standards if they select the Enforcer. Naval standard will be nearly 2.5 to three times the price of a ship built to commercial rules. The Enforcer however has been designed to perform naval LPD/MRSS functions and duties from scratch, so no worries about the ship being adapted from a commercial design to a naval one (as far as functionality is concerned).
THHE Destini is a JV between THHE Fabricators and Destini Shipbuilding, so saying THHE (a public listed entity and the 100% owner of THHE Fabricators) is part of THHE Destini is incorrect.
The corruption case involving the sale of the Makassar class by PT PAL to the Philippines may also have some impact to the decision by the RMN on which design will be selected. There is also the rumor of PT PAL essentially plagiarizing the design from the Koreans..
Labuan Shipyard is not part of Boustead. It is a 50/50 JV between Radimax and SapuraKencana.
Hop the above helps. Cheers!
AFAIK there is no current Enforcer design built to naval standards. As it is those ships are about 2x the price of the Makassar. If to full naval standards, it would surely cost as much as the gowinds, not to mention a major engineering redesign beneath the skin of the ship. BTW there is now a few large naval ships built to civilian standards, among them the danish Absalons.
The PT Pal corruption case is unique, the leaders of PT Pal is the one receiving, not the other way round as usual in the defence world. And those affected already removed from their respective posts. BTW the total cost of the SSV paid by Philippines is only usd 92 million for 2 ships, which is a lot of ship for the amount of money paid. Compare that to the LMS price of nearly usd60 million per ship, and you got just a slow, small ship with a 30mm cannon.
The design is among the ToT that is given to Indonesia for the LPD project. If it is plagiarized, you can say the same to the koreans selling german designed submarines to indonesia.
BTW Peru also did a ToT programme for the Makassar Class LPD with DSME. The 1st ship, costing usd60 million, has just been launched.
Which naval bases will be able to be docked by the proposed mrss? Either if its from pt pal/boustead or damen.
Lumut,KK and Kuantan
Just out of curiosity, what does MRSS mean in Royal Malaysian Navy context?
1. Does it mean it will have LPD
2. Will it have ‘on the way
replenishment’ (ammo, fuel)?
IMHO, a vessel of about 150 meters is most suitable, even if built to civilian standard.
LPD is likely, underway replenishment is unlikely as none of our current ships are prepared for that kind of maneuvers
Did PT PAL obtain a design license in the so called TOT from Korea? At the price point that is rumored, I don’t think so. In any case, my view is PT PAL is not gonna happen and my bet is with DAMEN. The RMN looks to be currently in favor of the Enforcer design…
As to commercial build vs naval build, the Enforcer is a DAMEN Royal Schelde design and not DAMEN Gorinchem (where the APMM OPVs are designed). Thus, my view is the ship would most probably be built based on a commercial Special Purpose Ship rules for hull and structure with naval rules thrown in for systems, taking into consideration redundancies, localized shock requirements, etc. Won’t be as cheap as the Makassar but will be significantly more capable.
@ api 69
If the damen is as you say “significantly more capable” is it like 2x more capable than the pt pal LPD? Is malaysian operational requirement requires the ship to be able to land troops and equipments on hostile area denied shores?
I am a big fan of damen products and designs, but for the MRSS, I am prefering the PT PAL LPD design. To me we should push for equipments that would give the best value for the required task, and we should not gold plate everything that we buy. A standard length makassar at usd50 million per ship is more than good enough for malaysian needs. And 3 ships would just cost less than 1/2 the price of a single gowind frigate.
Btw are you in any way a part of the entity that is pushing for the enforcer design?
Depends on what the RMN wants. A ship capable of performing command duties, i.e. surface and air detection capability, communication intelligence? Number of helos on deck and in the hangar? Number of vessels simultaneously docked? Vehicle carrying capacity? SAR? Hospital facilities? Troop carrying capacity? MLC 2006 compliance required? All this factors into the pricing.
Me? I am a shipyard man. Have been one for 25 years.