SHAH ALAM: Ground hog day. The Unity government national security sector budget will follow the same script as the one proposed by BN-PN government last year. Malaysian Defence had previously stated that the government set-up following GE15 will follow or made slight changes to the proposed budget as they will not have enough time to devise a completely new one.
Defence Minister DS Muhamad Hasan in his new year address at Wisma Pertahanan today said the government is likely to propose a RM17.4 billion budget for the ministry, with an OE of RM11.4 billion and a DE of RM5.9 billion. This is the same allocation in the proposed budget.
The defence budget is RM17.4 billion; 0.47 per cent of the total budget or 0.98 per cent of the 2021 Malaysian GDP, which is much lower than the 1.5 per cent sought by the Armed Forces shortly before the presentation of the budget.
The operational expenditure for 2023 is RM11.4 billion (RM11.1 billion for 2022) and the development expenditure is RM5.964 billion, an increase of some RM900 million from the 2022 figure of RM5.039 billion. This mean there is an increase of around RM1.3 billion for defence in the 2023 budget. However, in US dollar terms, it is a decrease of around US$200 million.
It was for this reason, Muhamad said that they will continue with the procurement of the MPA and MALE UAS, together with the planned purchase of the 155mm SPH; Malbatt replacement APC and the High Mobility Armoured Vehicle (HMAV). Former Defence Minister DS Hishammuddin Hussein announced the procurement of the HMAV together with unarmoured 4X4 vehicles under a contract worth some RM2.04 billion shortly after the proposed budget was tabled in Parliament.
It is unclear however whether the new minister and the Finance Ministry are aware that both the HMAV and 155mm SPH were awarded LOIs through direct negotiations instead of tender. Hopefully, the people in the defence and finance ministries will ensure of the fact before awarding the Letter of Award (LOA). That said the LOAs might already been signed.
Anyhow, despite saying the LCS project will be revived, Muhamad said he will table the proposal for the resumption at the Cabinet soon. Hopefully, by then we will know how much it will cost.
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Marhalim, do you think there is time for an official signing of some of these acquisitions by LIMA in May?
They have to actually so can end the show with figures higher than the previous show. Show signings for more likely as I reported previously that LOA for MPA and MALE UAS have already been signed. I do not think there is enough time to sign the LOA for FLIT/LCA at LIMA but stranger things had happened. Army stuff they will hog it for DSA next year. RMN stuff nothing so far but they could do show signings for smaller stuff
Lets hope they cancel the LOI for the Yavuz SPH. The Nezter Ceaser is much cheaper at RM33+m
I am always perplexed what are the difference between ARV, fitters, and engineering vehicles. Most of the time they kinda looks similar to the others.
They could cancel and not get anything as what Pakatan did during their 1st gig in Govt.
ARV and fitters both are operated by JLJ while AEV and EV by RAJD.
The diff between ARV and Fitters is the role…ARV is for recovery of damaged vehicle while Fitters are for FRT team use to repair vehicles in the field like changing an engine without being towed to base workshop.
“…both the HMAV and 155mm SPH were awarded LOIs through direct negotiations instead of tender. Hopefully, the people in the defence and finance ministries will ensure of the fact before awarding the Letter of Award (LOA). That said the LOAs might already been signed.”
If this contract continues, does it mean the Yavuz and Tarantula is a done deal? Perhaps there will not be much difference between the Anwar government and the previous.
Hasnan – ”The Nezter Ceaser is much cheaper at RM33+m”
Maybe but do we know how much parts will cost? Do we know how much something will cost to sustain for say a 25 year projected period in service?
Until or unless we know those facts let’s not get into the cheaper is better mode.
Personally I prefer a fully automatic system as it does away with the need for the crew to be out in the open fully exposed to the elements and shrapnel.
Yup if the LOAs were signed they may well go forward with it. Anwar can say it was my predecessors who did it
Thanks for the insight!
“prefer a fully automatic system”
Eventually the crew still needs to exit and reload once the preloaded rounds have been exhausted. In a sustained barrage operation, thus there’s no difference between a fully or semi system.
“Anwar can say it was my predecessors who did it”
As previous Pakatan Govt taught us. Rule #1 when taking over: Always blame the predecessor even if nobody is asking.
By ”LOA” you mean ”Letter Of Agreement” rather than ”Letter Of Award” correct?
Ed – ”Perhaps there will not be much difference between the Anwar government and the previous.”
Where you under the impression that this government would actually make sweeping changes in policy or how we do things?
It’s the Letter of Award, which means the contract or the Surat Setuju Terima (SST).
In a fully automatic system, the reloading is usually by the crew and the reloading crew with the resupply truck a. And it usually done outside the range of the adversarial system.
Yes Marhalim and the crew is in a protected cabin when firing rather then in the open and there is a need for less crew. The fact that the crew are in a cabin means the vehicle can also relocate factor; even a few seconds saved can make a difference.
But in the MY context, it would be preferable for us to buy a semi automatic SPH due to various reasons. As for the automatic 155mm SPH, personally I prefer the Boxer with the 155mm turret but I know its not going to happen
Marhalim – ”But in the MY context, it would be preferable for us to buy a semi automatic SPH due to various reasons. ”
What reasons Marhalim? What possible reasons could a platform which enables the crew to be in a protected cab rather than outside exposed to the elements be more suitable operable?
As you are aware we have had various issues when the equipment are too sophisticated especially for follow on troops.
Sad to know if he also uses the same tone as ” it was my predecessors who did it”.
Not so much a total political scenario change but I would have thought they’ll use all the stepping-stone opportunities to show they’re able to cut costs brought forward by the previous government as seen in the ECRL and MRT case. I mean, the made-known Yavuz SPH price is so obvious.
If we have issues training our troops to use a fully automated system and the more complex to use FCS [Caesar has one notoriously hard to use] and INS then we have serious problems as in this day and age everything requires a higher quality of manpower as everything has gotten more complex/harder to use/operate.
Quality wise things really went downhill in the late 1980’s; no thanks to the education system. In recent years efforts have been made to address this; i.e. the RMN a few years years ago stipulated that all officers had to have a BA; this led to the premature retirement of various Lt.’s who only had diplomas. Another issue is the lack of English proficiency; again no thanks to changes made in the past to the education system.
Ed – ”Sad to know if he also uses the same tone as ” it was my predecessors who did it”.
What is so ”sad”? He’s a politicians who will act like a politician. That’s the order of things and to be expected. He needs to stay in power; has an audience to please/ingratiate and has a script to maintain.
Ed – ”I mean, the made-known Yavuz SPH price is so obvious.”
It’s part and parcel of how we do things. National interests first remember; not the interests of the services or the taxpayer. If the present government is really serious about the ”rakyat” and adheres to their their gospel they will conduct a deep rooted fundamental revamp of the whole defence policy; including the role local companies play. Will it happen? Higher chance of us overtaking Switzerland with regards to engineering innovation or Brunei raising an airborne brigade. Not much will change …
Yes, perhaps the FCS and INS will be challenge as well. But if you mix it with the automatic loading and laying system it will be 200 per cent more complex and challenging as well
As long as we buy a Nato standard platform, they can share ammunition and charges. Training is of course another different issue altogether
“as seen in the ECRL and MRT case”
To digress a bit. If you go into the project details it is not a cost cutting effort as much changing the project parameters & specifications as to appear to be cutting cost. Again just charades and political smoke & mirrors to fool beknowing rakyats.
“What is so ”sad”?”
Sad in that many had voted ‘UBAH’ for Change so if nothings changed of course those said voters should be disappointed as much as feeling they had been taken to the cleaners.
Yup but for some it’s a calling
” those said voters should be disappointed as much as feeling they had been taken to the cleaners”
The voters from the onset should realise that anything said by politicians should be taken with a large dose of salt and that politicians irrespective of the party they represent speak with a forked tongue. The main agenda of any politician is to gain power and consolidate it. He/she has backers/allies/party hacks/voters to please. Expecting anything else is gagaland cloud cuckoo illusion.
So what is cost cutting if its not reducing cost? Is it cancelling the project to have zero costs? For example, is the decision to have China build 4 LMS to save around RM120 million cost cutting or charade? Many people talk about changing the system. Yet the system cannot easily be changed because its part of the national Affirmative Action policies. So the only way is to cut specs to reduce cost, without breaking the Affirmative Action policy framework.
Kel – ” Many people talk about changing the system”
“Many talk” about it; others point out that until or unless fundamental changes are made; things will remain the same.
Kel – “Yet the system cannot easily be changed because its part of the national Affirmative Action policies. So the only way is to cut specs to reduce cost, without breaking the Affirmative Action policy framework”
Yes and we will continue to have an underesourced MAF; one whose capabilities don’t reflect what we’ve spent: one which struggles to transition to a systems centric entity;one we can’t afford to adequately sustain and the local industry; as well as other forms of national interests will continue to get priority yet continue to not enable any long term tangible benefits. Whatever savings we gain will be squandered on various things.
Never mind about the “its part of the national Affirmative Action policies”; procurement will remain part of the patronage system.
“Expecting anything else is gagaland cloud cuckoo illusion.”
Try talk to those who supported them recently. They think that changing the Government from longstanding UMNO/BN will make everything OK, will solve corruption, will bring equality to all, will make Malaysia better, and basically will correct whatever that ails Malaysia.
As shown by PH first time rule, and the subsequent government changes, however people did not realise that it it isn’t simply UMNO/BN that ails the country but politics itself. Politicians are the problem here.