Here We Go Again LCS

BNS workers posed for pictures with Maharaja Lela at her launch in August, 2017 The workers are under strict order not to share the pictures of the ship during the construction.

SHAH ALAM: Here we go again. It appears that the government is considering its options to save the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) project. Defence Minister DS Ismail Sabri told Parliament today that they were looking at three options to salvage the project to ensure the completion of the ships

He said the first option was to appoint Naval Group of France (currently subcontractor ) as the rescue contractor to salvage of the project through a deed assignment from Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) – the company holds the contract for the project – using the balance of funds from the ceiling cost of the contract (RM9 billion) to complete at least two ships.

LCS PCU. Maharaja Lela. Her name could be seen on the stern. Picture taken on Aug. 25. 2017.

The second option was to allow BNS to complete the project with the balance of funds from the ceiling cost (again RM9 billion), to ensure at least two LCS are completed.

The keel of the LCS 3 with the Maharaja Lela in the back at the ceremony in December, 2018.

The third option was to cancel the contract with BNS altogether and the government salvaging the project. The third is similar to the one taken by the government when it appointed BNS to revive the NGPV project.

The keel of LCS 3 (left)and LCS 2 (right) in the ship building hangar at BNS last December, 2018.

Ismail also confirmed that the government had already paid RM6 billion to BNS. This was also revealed by the previous Defence Minister last year.

One of the mounting for the proppeler shaft of the LCS,

Based on the schedule, he added two of the LCS should be delivered already. However as of 31 July, 2020 not a single ship has been completed with the progress of the project at 56.7 per cent compared to the original schedule of 85.73 per cent, a delay of 29.06 per cent or 31.1 months.

The progress of the 1st LCS as posted on Twitter by the RMN LCS team in 2016.

The current status of the ships are LCS 1) 59.79 per cent; LCS2) 48.09 per cent ; LCS3) 43.75 per cent ; LCS4) 36.49 per cent and just 20 per cent on the LCS5. Work has not started at all on LCS6 as the current status as revealed by Ismail was 0 per cent.

The LCS major equipment detailed. RMN graphic

Ismail also said that the government will not pay BNS debts although the company had requested for it.
“However, the government will pay for the rights of the design and the completion of the detailed design while at the same time we are claiming the rights for the blocks and hulls and other equipment of the LCS already purchased by BNS as the government had already paid RM3 billion for them.

A graphic promoting the keel laying ceremony of the first LCS. RMN

What ever the steps taken to revive the project, Ismail said it will not affect the contributions and funds of the Armed Forces Provident Fund (LTAT) which subsidiaries are involved in the project.

Analysis
It is clear from the above the NGPV fiasco has been repeated as I had predicted on various posts. Again, I am not celebrating that my prediction came true, far from it. It must be noted that Ismail did not explained why they chose for two ships to be completed for two of the options. I am assuming that this was because the two ships are already joined (we know one is already joined) together with others are long way off from being completed. The keel of the sixth has not been laid down yet! It is also likely that the funds for the four will come from RMK13! I must say much of the blame for the fiasco should be laid on the politicians who insisted that all six ships be built locally instead of choosing the prudent route of getting one built by Naval Group in France. They also failed to supervise the project to ensure that the little amount of funds we reserved for national security are prudently spent.

— Malaysian Defence

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115 Comments

  1. If you want to put your laundry out in the public, please tell the complete picture.

    I want to know exactly which party that wants a major design change after at so many hulls already been laid down. What I know is that it was not BND that requested it.

    If option 1 & 2 is chosen, then the 2 completed mini frigates would be one of the most expensive ships in the world, with a cost of RM4.5 billion each.

    What a shame.

  2. IMO we cannot afford to waste RM9 billion on just 2 completed ships.

    The Gowind Frigate basic design is IMO a good design for TLDM. We need to fork out the money to complete all 6 ships. If we do need to top up to complete all 6, at most the cost would go to around RM1.8 billion each from the designed price of RM1.5 billion each.

    I would prefer that we have at least 9 Gowinds to afford to always put 3 ships out at sea. If we get just 2, then we will need to get yet another design to fulfill the ASW frigate role.

  3. Is that mean only 1st and 2nd ship will be in service? How about the rest? It is possible to cancel or scrap even the construction ready take place?

  4. Lets laughing with other people in the neighbourhood. This case will make Malaysia more stupid than donkey but somebody walk away with thick wallet. Meanwhile the rest of Malaysian are humiliated.

    It is not an accident but it was planned to fail.

  5. Well, if truth that needs to be said is distasteful to some parties, I see with my jaundiced eye that (1) Malaysia is not ready to build its own naval ships ‘properly’ and that (2) perhaps there’re other Malaysian concerns that could have build the ship’s …yet aren’t considered at all because they don’t seem to belong to any lobby or bloc that shares any rich pickings with its associates. I disliked this idea that any big project should be commandeered and managed by the politicians, the ministry and the retired defence officers who helmed the naval shipyards. This fiasco is off repeated much like there’s no other musical genres that can be played by the naval brass band. Can we put a stop to this? And have all our ships either build overseas or in-country by those that’s capable, in deed …not by those with the biggest trumpets? Or are we just a bunch of losers perpetually honwinked by ‘clowns’ in starched uniforms and blundering ministers?

  6. Dekat FB dah maki hamun BND siap digelar Bastard.

    But do they really know of the full story?? Was it fully BND was at fault or are there plenty of other parties that caused the delay?

  7. Indeed this would be the most expensive 3100 tone warship right now. For that USD1 billion per LCS we could get a FREMM…….

    Indonesians would laugh terribly at us, seriously. 4 or 5 ships out of 6 is acceptable but 2 is kinda hurmmmm.

    Maybe RMN would start to consider a USD250 million fully armed Kedah.

  8. Taib – “Or are we just a bunch of losers perpetually honwinked by ‘clowns’ in starched uniforms and blundering ministers?

    As in fond of saying : we have a tendency to repeat the same mistakes over and over again; the LCS cock up is just one in the long list of programmes in which the end user didn’t get something on time and within budget and the taxpayer his/her money’s worth.

    Luke other things the LCS was intended to benefit the country in various ways – ensuring the RMN got the desired capability was secondary. It was the local industry which had the final say on various aspects; not the end user. To justify building the ships locally the politicians denuded themselves into believing we could actually export them at a later date.

    Unless there is a genuine desire to change things; we’ll just go on and in repeating the same mistakes and we’ll have no one to blame but ourselves.

  9. Yeah man..i never believe bns has the capability to build stealthty ship let alone 6 units..but someone here believed otherwise lol..and ask for 3 more..still wanna sweettalk about bns..admit it bns messed up big time..6 bill paid should be enough to finish at least 1 ship lol..or they really need 9 bill to finish the first ship..i think not

  10. Oh 1.8 bill still okay? Elsewhere 1.8 bill will easily get us a proper frigate like iver huidfelt heck even gorskov frigate cost lower than that

  11. @…

    ” Dekat FB dah maki hamun BND siap digelar Bastard ”

    Yeah MMP has really vocal about the issue.

    The conspiracy in me thinks there’s some element of sabotage going on, that there were some changes in equipment forced by political pressure ( *wink* Mahat… *wink*). But I tend to associate every ill with him anyway so…haha

    This is on Najib book, I say. He approved the project to be helmed by Boustead despite knowing the bad experience with NGPV previously.

    I guess our shipyards current level is building something like Damen OPVs, not corvettes and frigates yet

  12. “If we do need to top up to complete all 6, at most the cost would go to around RM1.8 billion each from the designed price of RM1.5 billion each.”

    An extremely rough way to look at things, but averaging the quoted figures for the 6 hulls, the project is just over 1/3 complete. The government has paid 6 billion to BNS.

    If BNS completes the ships at this rate, the total cost will be 18 billion- 3 billion per ship.

    If the remaining 2/3 of the work is completed without further overruns at the scheduled rate (9 billion aggregate project cost), we will have to spend 6 billion more and the total cost will be 12 billion- 2 billion per ship.

  13. why not buy ship from our neighbour ?
    “https://instagram.fbkk22-3.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t51.2885-15/e35/83494720_179726196468950_6875340301748991205_n.jpg?_nc_ht=instagram.fcgk3-2.fna.fbcdn.net&_nc_cat=102&_nc_ohc=hE0gDgWhlj4AX9Oplyw&oh=dd9abee7aa8724fdb07325ff561034df&oe=5F52D891&dl=1%22”

    seems like indonesian domestic made coast guard ship above looks decent

  14. ASM – “I guess our shipyards current level is building something like””

    Too early days to form such a conclusion.

    The issue with the Kedahs was due to mismanagement. I have no idea as to what led us to where we are now with the LCSs.

    BNS started as a refit yard then along the way someone decided it should get into the naval construction business. Perhaps if a whole range of issues was sorted out first; it would be able to deliver ships (whether a frigate is a OPV( on time and within budget. Who knows?

  15. Same old story. Pengaruh Amin Shah masih kuat dlm kalangan top mgt BND n memang sepatutnya BND digelar bastard. Siasat betul-betul siapa dalang utama, berbillion duit rakyat hangups.

  16. @ firdaus

    “..but someone here believed otherwise lol”

    i have no beef in that.

    i just wanted the best for our country. and to me getting 9 gowinds would give the best capability for our country, as we are currently building 6. if we cannot complete those 6 ships, it would be the worse track record of anyone building ships.

    I really want all that caused this predicament to be heavily punished, and charged as a traitor to thr country.

  17. As the saying goes

    “Fool me once, shame on you
    Fool me twice, shame on me!”

    In Malaysia, Fool me 999999 times, you’re welcome to do it again!

  18. Why is it that absolutely no one is accountable for any of these? From NGPV to Gowind. Really, for the amount of money we burnt, we can get a Nimitz class CVN! I really lost count how much was ‘donated’ to those people.

    Why not we just get more FACs and Kasturis and be happy with it? From the amount, I think we can have 100 FAC and 50 Kasturis! Lol…

    I’m so upset with the state of our national defence sector. Just forget about all the fancy words such as ToT, national project etc. We just don’t have the capacity and capability to handle these, at least not yet. Those are to fool the gullible blind supporters of politicians only.

  19. Blaming Najib seems to be the flavour of the day, when BNS was then the obvious choice to build LCS seeing as they had successfully revived the NGPV ships previously. In truth many parties are to be blamed; the politicians for insisting to build all locally when we had never built them before, BNS for being too overly optimistic on trying to build all 6 ships in 1 go, the *somebodies important* that constantly change the design spec while in build, the Government (all sides) for not having audit or oversight on the build progress and reporting to Parliament, and the rakyat for their tidak apa attitude until something goes wrong which they then flip table in rage pointing fingers at everyone. None that I mentioned is about our technical prowess to build it.

    Are we really that incapabled to build the LCS? Nope, we even done a successful major refit on our subs (https://www.malaysiandefence.com/back-in-the-saddle-again/) so sure we can do it with proper planning, proper guidance and knowing where are our limits. Come on people, us Malaysians aren’t that useless!

  20. ASM – “This is on Najib book, I say””

    Maybe but what was done is part and parcel of the flawed manner in which we have long done things.

    If we were really serious about defence and placed priority in the armed services rather than than political imperatives; we’d have constructed them in France or at the initial pair. We also wouldn’t have had illusions of exporting them a letting the local industry dictate what should go in the ships.

    Luqman – “Maybe RMN would start to consider a USD250 million fully armed Kedah”

    Prior to the LCS being selected BNS was actually looking at a lengthened Meko A-100. Whether this would have been a better choice is unknown but it was BNS (with political backing) which selected the Gowind design; not the RMN.

    As it stands – despite its tardiness and whatever limitations it has – the LCS will be the RMN’s most capable frontline surface asset.

    The question is what next after all 6 eventually enter service? I’m convinced that the present LCS does not have what the RMN needs for it future requirements.

  21. @Azlan

    “The issue with the Kedahs was due to mismanagement. I have no idea as to what led us to where we are now with the LCSs.”

    That’s true. However in most scandals the cause was found to be mismanagement. I suppose we have to wait for the Auditor General report then.

    Is Amin Shah still influential in BNS, judging by some of remarks here? I thought he exiled himself to Dubai

    My take is politics force design changes at a very late stage, and BNS is unable to cope. If I recalled correctly some commenters mentioned RMN made some last minute changes to the design. Difficult to verify though

    Repl
    No lah

  22. sheesh, just issue a fine on BND for not finishing the ships on time,better still, privatize the company, see whether they would work harder with all the competition going on, mindef should also consider set up a procurement department to monitor the process, and if necessary, pull the brake if something goes wrong.

  23. The gov and publics enquiries should monitored deeply on this matters cos involved billion ringgit of Rakyat taxes payer or else not worth it….and should involves SPRM to… I suggest we should setup like a committee with joined gov and public to monitor this situation..

  24. Can you imagine what kind of frigate can RMN have for $1billion/each?
    At least RMN can have
    FREMM,
    IVER,
    DE ZEVEN PROVICIEN
    or even the newest
    DCNS FREGATES DE TAILLE INTERMEDIARE.

    You can select them freely and can have 2 units
    Or
    You can ask indonesia PT PAL to build PKR for 4 units.

    When concerned people said it was better to build the ship directly from french they were considered not support local industry.
    Hampeh…….

  25. When you are not capable, just say so that you are not. Dont act and pretend as you can do everything like the mat salehs, japanese, koreans and chinese. A mere user cant be an innovator.

    We had tried to show our mettle to the rest of the world, but all this while the result shows that, well, we can, but with much more inflated cost and delays and even non continuation of any of the projects that would have eventually groom into more indigenous and cheaper advanced technology local products, as what the turks did. Sadly, we are not on par as the rest of the world. Our mindset, culture, mentality, determination still need a long way to go to reach others level. We might just as well remain as users of other people’s products.

  26. @ASM
    I second your wink*wink* on ‘mahat…’ As a bloke who’s rowing thru’ my ‘5 series’, I really try my best to shut up and not shoot down any glowing but ignorant tribute to that Old Man! He fouled up our defence buys for political expediency for 2 decades, with the fall-out still being felt to this day.

  27. @Azlan
    “I’m convinced that the present LCS does not have what the RMN needs for it future requirements.”
    And what is that exactly and your suggested ship to fulfill that requirements?

  28. @ hornet lover

    ” From the amount, I think we can have 100 FAC and 50 Kasturis ”

    We could have gotten 38 Damen 1800 OPVs for that matter.

    @ azlan

    ” I’m convinced that the present LCS does not have what the RMN needs for it future requirements ”

    Why do you say so? In your opinion what type of frigate design that would suit the RMN requirement to replace the supposed capability to be delivered by those Gowinds? If we do really going to receive only 2 Gowinds, how would move forward to quickly get the needed capabilities? Do you think we can complete all 6 gowinds? How would you reset the 15 to 5 plan?

  29. ASM – “Why is it that absolutely no one is accountable for any of these? From NGPV to Gowind”

    The NGOPVs and LCS are merely 2 examples of a long list. A list of programmes which includes the participation of local companies which provide no added value but leads to higher prices; things selected without any thorough trials, things getting delayed because the middleman went bust; local companies having the final say; we can go on and on.

    A reflection of the country as a whole and how we view defence.
    Ensuring the end user gets the desired capability on time, spec and within budget is unfortunately secondary ….

    ASM – “We just don’t have the capacity and capability to handle these, at least not yet””

    Incorrect. We do “if” certain prerequisites are met : the right companies selected, the right equipment, a long term assessment of what we need and how much we have to spend, etc, etc.

    Ultimately it boils down to the existing policy we have and our outlook of defence. Why we need deep and fundamental changes in how we go about doing things. Everything from the part local companies play; to how we select equipment and how we assign/allocate funding is in need of major change to undo deep rooted flaws ingrained in our system.

    I’m fond of repeating this : “Unless there is a genuine desire to change things; we’ll just go on and in repeating the same mistakes and we’ll have no one to blame but ourselves.””

  30. on the budget.

    so now the ceiling of RM9 billion is not to be exceeded again.

    so the government has paid RM6 billion. Is the VO of RM1.4 billion included in this?

    So the balance is RM3 billion or RM1.6 billion only? Or would the balance be RM4.4 billion more? This will surely come from the RMK12 Budget.

    As for RMK12 budget, there will be quite a surplus (if it is maintained at RMK11 level) as most of the planned LMS gowind payment was actually paid in RMK11 rather than mostly in RMK12 as per planned.

    The RMK12 (2021-2025) development budget for TLDM from what we know was planned to be spent on

    – balance 2 of the 6 gowinds (which the budget now to be used to complete at least 2 gowinds)
    – 2 ASW helicopters
    – 16 FIC (plus 6 UOR for ops benteng)
    – 8 more LMS (batch 2 of LMS68 or new design?)
    – 2 MRSS

  31. …. – “your opinion what type of frigate design that would suit the RMN requirement to replace the supposed capability”

    I have actually gone into this previously.

    I’m talking about future operational requirements. From the start I was convinced that a slightly larger platform (not necessarily one displacing 5000 tonnes above) should have been selected in order for us to have the option of future growth. As it stands the LCS neither has the needed deck or below deck space to add stuff.

    It is for this reason that I’m against the idea of the RMN at some point in the future going for a follow on batch merely because the facilities are already in place – it was was the government which decided to build them locally and create the needed infrastructure. The RMN’s requirements should take precedence; if at some point in the future it finds that additionally LCS don’t meet its requirements; so be it.

    …. – “Do you think we can complete all 6 gowinds?“

    Yes we should because cancelling it would have consequences and we have no idea how long it will take for the RMN to receive something else.

    … – “How would you reset the 15 to 5 plan?””

    From the start I’ve maintained that the 5/15 was highly optimistic as it was dependent on various factors beyond the RMN’s immediate control and also whether it was what the RMN actually needed (reservations also shared by RMN people I asked). As it stands the 5/15 will no longer be the 5/15 anymore : 4 LMSs from China and a very strong likelihood others will be of a different design; fitted out differently.

    How I would “reset” it is very subjective (I’m not into hypothetical wish lists/ORBATs as they – despite their value – are subjective) but ultimately dependent on various yet to be answered factors. I do know that whatever changes are made: priority must be placed on ensuring as much as much commonality as possible.

  32. … – “In your opinion what type of frigate design that would suit the RMN requirement to replace the supposed capability to be delivered by those Gowinds”

    You asked mr this before. My is as it was previously : i don’t actually have a preferred design as each design has its merits and I’m more interested in the “systems” capabilities we acquire to go with whether design we select.

    What we should have done; was to go for a design which would not only enabled the first batch of 6 ships to based on but also one which would enable us to “tweak” in the future in the event we desired certain changes/modifications . Changes/modifications we can perform whist still relying on the same basic design. Now whether the Gowind design can be lengthened a bit or have its size enlarged is unknown to me.

  33. … – “Why do you say so”

    We should think further ahead and not get too tied down to any particular design unless it – without major intensive modifications – can be “modified”. Requirements change; as do threat perceptions.

    A slight longer/larger design offers more flexibility : a slightly larger hangar enables more things to be stored and does away with the need for the helo to be brought to the flight deck for maintenance; free deck and below deck space in the B position enables us to add the number of VLS cells or even a CIWS if we saw fit; extra space amidships enables us to add SSMs; etc. These are things we can’t do with the current LCS design.

  34. Still wanna believe on bns ..haha so funnyla you..bns messed up big time already lor..for additional lms please request for improved powerpack to push the speed up onto 26 to 28 knots with armed version with chinese ashm n/or fl3000n and basic ciws like on kcr..main gun up to 40mm at least

  35. Actually, I am seeking a quick solution to the LCS fiasco. Get the funding for the first 2 ships, let BNS and their idiot retired generals and admirals to complete them and SELL BNS or even BHIC to the highest bidder, say, a competent shipbuilding company from Sabah, Labuan, Sarawak or Penang! Finito! And buy used ships from Japan, Germany or France. Even ex US Navy ships are better than no ship at all. We’ll be the laughing stock of ASEAN alright but someone really older than Methuselah was left playing Lego for far too long with our defence! Am at a loss for more words mates, …

    Reply
    I am afraid there is no quick and easy solution to the issue. One cannot sell BNS to another party without a guarantee that it will get lucrative jobs from the government, which is the reason we are in the current predicament. It must be noted that for both the NGPV and LCS projects the government has paid over RM1 billion to develop the yard alone. This is a separate payments outside the scope of the ship building contracts itself

  36. Taib – “Even ex US Navy ships are better than no ship at all”

    Not if age and support issues are a problem. Take the Perry; we declined the offer because of the engine and we found that for us; operating it would create problems as it would be a single ship with no commonality with what we had and it would be maintenance intensive.

    The RMN is a small navy with limited resources which have long been stretched to the limit operating the various ships in service (which the 5/15 is aimed at rectifying). Operating costs and support issues are a major concern.

  37. @ azlan

    ” A slight longer/larger design offers more flexibility : a slightly larger hangar enables more things to be stored and does away with the need for the helo to be brought to the flight deck for maintenance; free deck and below deck space in the B position enables us to add the number of VLS cells or even a CIWS if we saw fit; extra space amidships enables us to add SSMs; etc. These are things we can’t do with the current LCS design ”

    I thought you always say that RMN does not need a larger frigate as we operate no more than a few days sailing from the nearest port?

  38. when i condem BN gov and BNS years ago regarding this issue,some Einsteins bombared me..cost over run,makan duit,miss manage..what else..sambung2

  39. Politics aside, i believe BNS also face some technical difficulties in fitting out the ship’s system. Radar, electronic warfare, combat system etc. I read somewhere that the electronics are going to be assembled in Malaysia?..that alone will take some serious amount of expertise to begin with dealing with sophisticated military equipment. Building a ship hull is comparatively ‘the easy stuff’ when compared with the electronics stuffs. That alone speak a lot about the state of malaysia industry capability. Just my two cents

  40. @Azlan

    “Prior to the LCS being selected BNS was actually looking at a lengthened Meko A-100.”

    Whatever design we will chose back then, i think the result will still be the same as right now.

    @Firdaus
    “Still wanna believe on bns ..haha so funnyla you..bns messed up big time already lor”

    Whats wrong with you? Its BNS that should complete those ships even though only just 2. Whether any of us believe in BNS doesn’t matter as in the end the government will decide who is the contractor.

    “for additional lms please request for improved powerpack to push the speed up onto 26 to 28 knots with armed version with chinese ashm n/or fl3000n and basic ciws like on kcr..main gun up to 40mm at least”

    No chinese equipment on lms please, 30mm gun is enough for lms. Further weapons could be installed by means of containers/mission pack

  41. @Azlan

    “Prior to the LCS being selected BNS was actually looking at a lengthened Meko A-100.”

    Not a bad idea and should be less risky and no need to pay for new tot of new design but whatever design we will chose back then, i think the result will still be the same as right now.

    @Firdaus
    “Still wanna believe on bns ..haha so funnyla you..bns messed up big time already lor”

    Whats wrong with you? Its BNS that should complete those ships even though only just 2. Whether any of us believe in BNS doesn’t matter as in the end the government will decide who is the contractor.

    “for additional lms please request for improved powerpack to push the speed up onto 26 to 28 knots with armed version with chinese ashm n/or fl3000n and basic ciws like on kcr..main gun up to 40mm at least”

    No chinese equipment on lms please, 30mm gun is enough for lms. Further weapons could be installed by means of containers/mission pack

    Reply
    What mission containers are you talking about? AFAIK there is no Chinese ones and its unlikely any Western made ones will be allowed to be integrated into a China made ship with a China made CMS

  42. Marhalim,

    The question is if all 6 LCSs are delivered and BNS for whatever reason still can recoup its costs. Do we next undertake yet another project to keep BNS heathy? If so; what is the main objective : to keep BNS afloat or to ensure the RMN gets the capability it needs?
    Do the RMN’s actual requirements become secondary?

    I’m all for follow on LCS based on the Gowind design but only if it meets the RMN’s future requirements. The needs is the local industry (under the guise of national interests) must never come first before that if the armed services. Unfortunately for a long time this has been the case ….

  43. @Taib
    BNS has good bones, but they lack leadership and proper management. The Government could, say, sell 51% to a professional naval shipbuilder (Naval perhaps?) with conditions to infuse it with professional managers that will not be impeded by politics. Just look at the stunning turnaround of Proton with professional management and when the Government took a step back. If there is a will, there will be a way forward.

    Right now, the way forward is to clear all 5 ships underbuild, then see if we can complete the order for the last 6th unit. Again I want to stress, it does TLDM no good to cancel these ships as they need them like now. And might I add, this SNAFU is merely keeping company with Brit naval ship projects which chronically overran budget more often than they are not.

  44. Only two with 6 bill already paid? Are you seriously okay with that? 3 bill for a lcs is an outright ridiculous..unless bns can give back 3 bill to the govt..but highly unlikely

  45. @Firdaus

    Who are you talking to?

    @Joe

    ” The Government could, say, sell 51% to a professional naval shipbuilder (Naval perhaps?) with conditions to infuse it with professional managers that will not be impeded by politics”

    Theoretically a sound idea, but unlike Proton there’s not really a market for warships in SEA, and each country prefers to do maintenance in their own place. Companies like Naval Group were actually government agencies responsible for warship related R&D (Naval Group was known as DCN – Directorate of Naval Construction ) then later spun off as a GLC but still retaining the same role and function. Unless Boustead fulfills the same role as Naval Group, IMO it’s not much of an incentive to take it over.

  46. @JunTau
    None of the previous Governments are blameless. While BN shouldered much of the blame, what did PH do for the close 2 years they were in charge? Did Mat Sabu or LCT warned of impending issues of LCS? None. Why did it take until PN to raise this matter up? Keeping in mind that PN were only in charge for a mere 4 months (minus MCO) while PH had 22 months.

    @Firdaus
    We could go the route of our sub refit. Give BNS the financial support needed to complete the work, then sue BNS for contractual delays in late deliveries for each of these ships. We will get our ships and some money back.

    Reply
    The BN Government bore much of the blame for the LCS government. Mat Sabu could be faulted for not looking into the problems once he took over. Unfortunately they were distracted by the need to find any kind of malpractices that could be added to the already long list of 1MDB

  47. @Azlan
    “Not if age and support issues are a problem..”

    True, but beggar cant be chooser. Just go with Indonesia style, look for used ship and deal with the problem. At least used ship already can float, cant she?

    How long RMN can wait for additional combat ship?

    @Firdaus
    ‘Only two with 6 bill already paid? Are you seriously okay with that? 3 bill for a lcs is an outright ridiculous..unless bns can give back 3 bill to the govt..but highly unlikely”

    Nothing is right.
    Big part of 6 billion already cashed out to pay parts and operational cost. 2 ships is the number can be delivered with the remaining cash. The other 4 need additional fund to complete which Will take another billions.
    All in all this LCS project is another scandal just as NGPV.

  48. @ASM
    “there’s not really a market for warships in SEA”
    They will still have incentives since we have to do periodic maint on the Naval-sourced subs and Naval-sourced LCS. Also having local presence in this region might just spur them to be proactive to sell here.

    More than just having a shipyard here, they could have an offshoot market design team to study our regional needs and design ships that would perfectly cater for those requirements without the bells & whistles, ie instead of expensive and overengineered Belharra they could market a cheaper modular Gowind-like frigate that could be enlarged/ shrunk with similar capabilities but technically simpler and cost far cheaper to build. The customers could have option to build it at BNS yard (with cheaper price & faster delivery) or at their own countries. There are potential in this region esp for subs.

    @Marhalim
    “The BN Government bore much of the blame”
    Yes as I stated quite clearly above, but it doesn’t absolve their replacements the blame that allowed it to get this bad this far. The problem with 1MDB was their sole obsession with it and IMHO what does the Menhan or Defence Ministry got to do with it. NOTHING. He should have focused on doing his duty to highlight such issues before it got this bad, similarly like the fiasco with MKM mass grounding. It was like crying wolf after it had eaten all the sheeps. IMHO perhaps he & his team wasn’t incompetent as it may sound but a classic case of putting the wrong people in the wrong positions.

  49. Thats my point here..its obviously not okay if only 2 ship can be build with 6 bill already paid..but lots of people here look okay with it..oh with this fiasco its only logical for us to start to rearm our kedahs…or still wanna transfer them to mmea..lol and hope for miracle with this lcs bs..if at the end only 2 ships is completed..they i demand govt to ask 3 billion back from bns and sue them and penalty them and lastly close them for good..

  50. During the time of Mat Sabu, he did succeed in solving the maintenance issue of MKM. But imo he failed to act accordingly regarding LCS project. Just telling that there was delay caused by technical issue and need xxx amount to pay, thats all. Honestly that info is really not enough to explain the cause of the delay. This doesn’t mean i solely blame Mat Sabu though. But regardless the damage have been done. Like all readers here i am terribly frustrated also with what is happening.

  51. I maybe wrong, but the 57mm and 30mm guns and naval strike missiles already ordered and paid for. These can still be used to rearm the Kedah or some other ships.. I guess

    Reply
    Not

  52. @Firdaus

    ” Thats my point here..its obviously not okay if only 2 ship can be build with 6 bill already paid..but lots of people here look okay with it..oh with this fiasco i”

    I am not sure whether you understood the comments here. Nobody, absolutely NO ONE IS OK WITH IT.

    . This is a messy problem, and the solution is probably will be a messy one. In any case RMN still needs those ships, so they have to be completed one way or another. Any legal action against Boustead should be considered later, the priority is to find the best solution to salvage the situation without hobbling RMN further.

  53. Romeo – True, but beggar cant be chooser. Just go with Indonesia style, look for used ship and deal with the problem.”

    That’s a nice cliche but it has to be seen in the overall context …
    A navy which is already struggling with a large logistical/support footprint and has limited resources will not want to be placed in a position where its forced to operate assets which will cause more issues; adding to those it already has ….

    Hence the 5/15 aimed at reducing – not enlarging the logistical/support footprint …

    Romeo – “At least used ship already can float, cant she?”

    Going by this line of reasoning; the 4 decade of FAC fleet and the 5 decade old pair of PCs can still “float”…. The Philippines has ships originally laid down in the 1940’s which can still “float”…

    The issue with our aged ships (any for that matter) is that they have long gotten maintenance intensive because of age and this has also impacted the actual amount of time they can put to sea ….. Which is why the RMN is in no hurry to get pre owned aged ships that will be problematic to run in the long term. Just because Indonesia does doesn’t mean we should too …..

  54. Im reading the tone here..well understandable cuz it not really our money in play here lol..completed it one way or another..yeah sure with additional fund..even their ceiling price was already rudonculous and yet still wanna add more to their ceiling price..i think no thank you..push bns to complete at least 2 ship and then demand them to return 3bill back to the govt..thats the way i see it..

  55. @Luqman
    I don’t think it was a matter of him solving MKM issue by fixing the problem but rather it was Sukhoi allowing us to extend the use period before SLEP (initial 10,000hr extended to 15,000hr). The problem ‘went away’ but was it really fixed? I don’t think so. Eventually when they hit 15,000 hr mark, we will still need to take them out of service. If we didn’t fix the problem, we are only delaying the inevitable.

    @Firdaus
    The tone here is not to panic and overreact, we can and should have matured level discussions and debates unlike in Parliament.

    The damage is done, now is what can be salvaged and TLDM & Government get the best outcome from this situation. Now is a matter of wants and needs. We don’t want to pay more than we should but TLDM needs these ships more than the monetary sum. IMHO the Government should prioritise TLDM needs firstly by completing these ships, then to get back compensation from BNS. They can then open DWP or PAC to find the cause of this matter and bring the responsible parties to justice.

    Reply
    An investigation on defence deals were done shortly after PH took over, Mat Sabu did not announced the results but I am guessing it didn’t find anything incriminating on the LCS project as AFAIK there was no police/SPRM reports on it unlike MD530G or Gempita contracts though nothing come out of it. Any investigations into the project should be done immediately to preserve evidence and also to ensure fairness to all involved especially for those are innocent. Anyhow any company taking over from BNS, if it happens will want to do due diligence first to ensure to ensure they are also protected from the fiasco

  56. I am with azlan.

    Right now we cannot afford to create a more “rojak” fleet of Frigates. I am all for say 2 types of Frigate, but both must have distinct operational capabilities to justify it.

    Australia, for example, will have a dedicated air warfare destroyer and a ASW frigate (which is actually bigger than the air warfare destroyer).

    IMO we really have to make the Gowinds work. If those ships need to be towed to MMHE Pasir Gudang to be completed for example, then that is what that is needed to be done. If the management of BND need to be totally replaced by Naval Group appointed people, then that is needed to be done. Then we need a few more of the Gowinds, that can be made in anywhere as far as i concerned, so that we can have the numbers needed to put a reasonable amount of similar Frigates at sea at any one time.

    What we need to do is, to really back the expansion of MMEA to take up the peacetime patrolling task from TLDM. We need to quickly build new OPVs and get some used ships to bolster the MMEA patrolling force. If we need to do a new round of personnel transfer to MMEA, then that should be done.

  57. “Im reading the tone here..well understandable cuz it not really our money in play here”

    Whose tone are you reading then? From the commentators nobody is happy with the situation at all. But that is the situation right now and there’s nothing much you could do but to accept and then try to rectify it.

    ” i think no thank you..push bns to complete at least 2 ship and then demand them to return 3bill back to the govt..thats the way i see it..”

    No decision has been taken yet so just wait for it.

  58. “push bns to complete at least 2 ship and then demand them to return 3bill back to the govt..thats the way i see it..”

    @ Firdaus. I like this idea, but as you know in Malaysia, they can just show you the “Man Shrugging” emoji and tell you ‘ boss, duit xde, xleh sambung kje’…. and get away with it.

    Now there are 2 statements below which require more explanation

    ” using the balance of funds from the ceiling cost of the contract (RM9 billion) to complete at least two ships.”

    It means that all money paid is dried up, and we need to fork out 3 billion on top of the already paid 6 billion to complete the 2 ships if we hire Naval Group to complete them. Is my interpretation correct?

    ” we are claiming the rights for the blocks and hulls and other equipment of the LCS already purchased by BNS as the government had already paid RM3 billion for them.”

    What happened to the other 3 billion that we’ve already paid out? Must be claimed under the ‘operational cost’, ‘project contingency fund’, ‘project management fund’, and whatever that can’t be clearly audited. Lol…
    Can the Auditor General’s officer choose this project as their 2021 target project, and we invite some of them to this site as members.

    Reply
    Yes need extra funds whatever options. I believe the other RM3 billion are are payments for work done

  59. @ marhalim

    ” but I am guessing it didn’t find anything incriminating on the LCS project as AFAIK there was no police/SPRM reports on it unlike MD530G or Gempita contracts though nothing come out of it ”

    Then we need to hang the person who wanted to change so much of the ship. I understand the intention was good, to get the latest equipment for the Gowinds, but that should not be at the expense of scuttling the whole project and running the budget out of whack.

  60. ….

    We still have a long way to go but at least some level of commonality has been achieved; lessening the strain on our support/logistics infrastructure : the Lekius and Kasturis share the same air search radar; the 30mms on the Lekius have been added to the Kasturis and Korean and Korean training ships and (a newer version) will go on the LCS; the Kasturis, Handalans and Perdanas share the same ESM; the Kasturis, Lekius and Lynxs fire the same torp (likely to time expire soon though, the Kedahs and LCSs share the same director; and the Kasturis, LCS and Lekiu have the same calibre main gun (although I’m not sure if 3P which the LCS will be equipped with can be fired from the Mk2 on the Lekius).

  61. @Marhalim
    “I am guessing it didn’t find anything incriminating on the LCS project as AFAIK there was no police/SPRM reports”
    Even if there weren’t any criminal element suspected, certainly there must be an element of negligence or incompetence to go from NFA to this situation today. If the said investigation really didn’t see any problems worth to bring up in Parliament (as they did with MKMs), then I really want to question our politicians (from both sides) abilities to do a proper investigation. Better to hire an audit firm to do the job.

    @Hornet Lover
    The total project budget is RM 9Bil so there is still RM 3Bil left in but unlikely all 5 ships on the slipway can be completed with the remaining budget. It will be a cost overrun for sure.

    @…
    Somehow this “Right now we cannot afford to create a more “rojak” fleet of Frigates” doesn’t jive with this “get some used ships to bolster the MMEA” because used will definitely be “rojak” in itself. So your meaning it isn’t ok for TLDM to be “rojak” but its ok for MMEA to be one?

  62. What is rojak anyway?
    If a navy has 2 types of OPV with length of 70m and 90m, but both have the same system.
    If an AF has 2 sq of SU-30, one with Russian original system and the other is MKM.

    Which is rojak or both are rojak?

    Reply
    As the ships have the systems they are not rojak then as the crew can be qualified on either ships and work on both of them one after the other, maintenance and spares are also the same things. Yes as the hulls are different, the crews need to adjust for this especially when berthing or RAS. As for the jets, its rojak really as maintenance, spares and qualifications will need to be separated for both the flight and ground crews. Yes they can be cross qualified also but need more supervision and certification unlike the ships.

  63. Try to complete 2 ship only with no additional funding whatsoever…ofcourse rm6 billion for 2 ship only considered normal for us malaysians..enough is enough just shut that so called ‘naval’ shipyard for good..oh and mr … With this conundrum still wanna transfer kedahs to mmea? Wink wink

  64. Romeo – “What is rojak anyway”

    If the navy already operates 3-4 ship classes sharing little or no commonality; each ship requiring different spares to stockpiled and personnel having to be trained to operate and maintain the different radars, CMS,, engines, directors, ESMs, navigation systems, guidance systems, etc; then this is “rojak”.

    The situation becomes even more of a “rojak” when or if a new ship with little or no commonality to what’s already operated; enters service.

    Quite obviously if different classes of ships (or fighters) were operated but shared some level of commonality; then it would not be a complete “rojak” situation …

  65. @Marhalim
    “As the ships have the systems they are not rojak then as the crew can be qualified on either ships and work on both of them one after the other, maintenance and spares are also the same things. Yes as the hulls are different, the crews need to adjust for this especially when berthing or RAS. As for the jets, its rojak really as maintenance, spares and qualifications will need to be separated for both the flight and ground crews. Yes they can be cross qualified also but need more supervision and certification unlike the ships.$

    Excellent explanation sir….we share the same idea.
    I hope it can enlight us all what is rojak and how different thing can be called a rojak.

    Back to topic,
    LCS will not be build in 6 units but only 2 units. What solution do you have for RMN? RMN can not wait forever.
    Another project of LCS or NGPV start soon?…..unlikely.
    What is the cheapest and fastest solution so RMN can get additional combat surface ship?
    It is nice to have a brand new ship but duty come first.
    A used ship sold is platform only. RMN can installed the same system by local shipyard.
    As long as local shipyard can maintenance the hull, it wont be a problem where the used ship come from.
    The only problem is used ship give no/small money to middle man, that is problem for them

    Reply
    It will be six eventually, two as an immediate solution to the problem especially when it comes to funding. The other four can wait for now.

    As for no money for middleman for buying second hand ships, not really, if there is a will, there will be a way. If the ship is transferred hot most of the equipment will be good to go for a certain period. Even then the new owner must be prepare for to pay for spares and support which will not be in the pipeline unless it operates the same or similar ships.
    That’s the reason the RMN declined the Mark V SOC boats around 2016. Yes the boats will be gifted, we only need to pay for the transportation and other stuff like new radios and other small stuff. It was declined as the maintenance and support costs were to be huge.

  66. I just wonder this gowind frigates project is request by RMN or the politician? I prefer call this ship frigates rather than LCS due to its weapon, sensor, design and automation…

    Reply
    Please refer to Malaysian Defence archives on the issue

  67. @Marhalim
    “It will be six eventually, two as an immediate solution to the problem especially when it comes to funding. The other four can wait for now”

    Hope so, but it was not happened to NGPV project. As this disaster is repetition of NGPV, it is fair enough we assume that LCS will only built 2 units, at least for now untill confirm government decision for the other four is announced.

    “That’s the reason the RMN declined the Mark V SOC boats around 2016. Yes the boats will be gifted, we only need to pay for the transportation and other stuff like new radios and other small stuff. It was declined as the maintenance and support costs were to be huge”

    It was happened to brunai blackhawk too and so was the paladin M109. I will call it as unproffesional exercise. If only cost anr benefit are all considered deeply, there will be no cancelation or the free hardware will not be requested.

    Reply
    NGPV contract was only for six ships and all completed after the debacle. The project envisaged 27 ships but clearly when national interest took over that goal was never to be reached. The 27 NGPV were supposed to be simple PVs similar to the Vosper PCs but bigger for better endurance and seakeeping during patrols in the EEZ

  68. correct me if im wrong, if only 2 ships for the RM9 billion, That more then 1 billion USD per ship. Might as well we ordered arleight burke or type 45 destroyer. LOL.

  69. Right now the main quandary is how can we get more surface ships to patrol our EEZ from illegal incursions and protect our economic activity.

    2 main things to do.

    1. to complete our Gowinds.

    2. to quickly add more OPVs to the MMEA fleet.

    1. To complete our Gowinds.
    From our current situation, we have up till 2025 to complete at least 4 of the 6 Gowinds. The first 4 ships is in advanced enough build condition to be completed as is. Then there is the question of the next 2. This next 2 and further samples can be with upgraded systems (a latest radar for example)

    2. To quickly add more OPVs to the MMEA fleet.
    The 3 Damen 1800 OPV will be completed by 2020/21. RIght now we need to quickly decide to have batch 2 of the OPVs so that all the workers and the shipyard would still be “hot” and start the build of no 4, 5 and 6 of the Damen 1800 OPV design. Concurrently we need to order more OPVs. This can be either locally build at other shipyards, or ordered from overseas shipyards. OPV designs from South Korea, Japan and India are all suitable, with costs similar or cheaper than our Damen 1800 OPV design. For me I would prefer the Tae Pyung Yang-class OPVs from South Korea. It has a length of 140m with a full displacement of about 4,000 tonnes. Each cost about usd37 million
    http://www.navalnews.com/naval-news/2020/04/two-more-3000-tons-patrol-vessels-for-the-korea-coast-guard-fleet/

    As a stopgap to quickly get hulls as quickly as possible, a few ships that we can look at for MMEA. There are proposals previously on used oil and gas supply ships and OSVs. Then there are the South Korean Pohang Class corvettes, which have been bought by quite a few foreign coast guards and navies. We could ask Australia for a few more of the Bay Class patrol boats, which 2 was donated to MMEA previously. New Zealand Navy just retired 2 of their 55m Lake Class inshore patrol vessels, which are used sparingly due to the lack of manpower. Another 2 is also due to be retired soon, and MMEA taking all 4 would be a good solution to increase the fleet numbers quickly.

    RNZN Lake Class IPV
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/45/HMNZS_Rotoiti_and_HMNZS_Pukaki_in_2010.jpg

    Ex Bay Class MMEA
    https://www.malaysiandefence.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/IMG_5544-1.jpg

    Ex Pohang Class Peru Coast Guard
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/be/BAP_Ferr%C3%A9_%28PM-211%29.jpg/1280px-BAP_Ferr%C3%A9_%28PM-211%29.jpg

    All of these used ships, as it is going to be used by MMEA, does not have and does not need complicated and expensive electronic systems like it is on the Frigates.

  70. Who to assign the blame is not important now. What is important now is to complete the first two ships . Meanwhile figure out what to do with the other 4 ships.
    Take away the other 4 ships from BNS n give to other yards?. Get BNS to finish all 6?.
    There are so many capable yards. Just look at the builder of the MMEA shipbuilder. They delivered the ships to MMEA within time frame if not just slight delay. The Johore based Malaysian shipyard n Engineering, there is also another shipyard in East Malaysia who built n exported ships to the Middle East . In the future learn from the mistake. BNS is good for maintenance and servicing. So let them do that. Building of new ships please call for open tender by Malaysian yards. Evaluate their capability both technical n financial wise. Choose the best. Based on merit alone not connection with LTAT or politicians.

  71. @mustaffa..thats my point here..govt will never get back monies that already paid to bns..and if only wanna complete 2 ships only..what will become to another two hulls that already been laid down…And once again no to used ship

  72. @ Lee Yoke Meng

    Capability, facilities wise, BND is more than capable of completing those gowinds on time.

    The main problem was the human aspect of it. Delays was caused by poor management and planning (which is more than capable to be done if proper human resources was taken on), late changes to original plans (which caused build delays and major redesign), not to mention delays caused by indecisions by top leaders.

    We cannot rewind the delays, but we need to move on. One of the easiest is to hand over the management of BND to a competent entity, no matter if it is MMHE, or Naval Group.

    Also what we need right now is to shield our defence development from the political troubles that we have right now. With the possibility of snap elections, we cannot let this issue to be delayed and be passed to be decided later.

  73. @ Lee

    ” Who to assign the blame is not important now. What is important now is to complete the first two ships . Meanwhile figure out what to do with the other 4 ships.”

    Precisely. Unfortunately some kept on insisting on suing BNS for the money. Should be done, yes, but not the priority right now. Most important is to decide the best action for the 4 ships as to not hamper RMN even further.

    ” Just look at the builder of the MMEA shipbuilder. They delivered the ships to MMEA within time frame if not just slight delay.”

    Delay wasn’t due to them I think (Destini). Actually I was also thinking why not get them involved too…but perhaps they did consider it (there were meetings between BNS and THHE-Destini early this year I think) but maybe didn’t do so due to the complexity of the design.

    @…

    ” late changes to original plans (which caused build delays and major redesign)”

    I’ve heard of this too. Were there really last minute design changes,and who asked for it?

  74. ” The Johore based Malaysian shipyard n Engineering, there is also another shipyard in East Malaysia who built n exported ships to the Middle East”

    The company is Shin Yang Shipping. It built quite a number of ships for UAE Navy, the latest was launched recently earlier last month. A thing to note that one of LST built by Shin Yang was attacked by Houthi rebels at the Yemeni port and got severely damaged

  75. Romeo – “It was happened to brunai blackhawk too and so was the paladin M109. I will call it as unproffesional exercise””

    I will call it another case of a political decision being made acquire stuff without any consideration being placed what the potential end user has to say about the matter …

    Whenever proposals are made to get something (new or otherwise) the end user does an assessment on the projected operating/maintenance costs to get an idea as to how much and how suitable something will be for its projected period of service. This will also factor in increasing costs at a later date (due to age) and the availability of spares and support over a certain period.

    At times the bureaucrats heed the end users recommendations but at times it’s ignored and a decision to proceed is made. At times also offers for stuff at a government to government level are received and considered without even first asking the end user.

    Fadiman – “ just wonder this gowind frigates project is request by RMN or the politicians”

    The requirement for 6 multi role ships to be optimised for operations in a littoral environment was part of the RMN’s ongoing modernisation plans. The actual selection of the design was made not by the RMN but by the government and the yard.

    Fadiman – “I prefer call this ship frigates rather than LCS due to its weapon, sensor, design and automation”

    “Frigate” refers to a ship of a certain size/displacement which traditionally is assigned certain roles …

    “LCS” refers to a ship that is intended to perform certain roles in a certain type of environment. The displacement and weapons fit does not necessarily reflect its official designation.

    What is really a “frigate”, “corvette”, “OPV”, etc has become blurred. One navy’s “destroyer” can be another navy’s “ frigate” and you can have a “OPV” armed to the same level as a “frigate”. Depends on the user.
    The Kasturis for example were first called “mini frigates” then “corvettes”. There is no fixed rule.

  76. @ Azlan

    ” The actual selection of the design was made not by the RMN but by the government and the yard.”

    Really? So the decision to get Gowinds was forced down the Navy’s throat ? Does the design meet the needs of the Navy at all?

  77. The main objective to developed the shipyard in Malaysia is total major failure despite efforts getting the right partners, experience personnel etc. The Chinese shipyard now have risen to beat even the Korean and Japanese. We should have learn all this, again politics and money takes the priority rather than ensuring our country safety and sovereignty. Honestly, the parties involved has put everyone in shame. If we cannot make it right here, not sure how the LCS really work out there.

  78. @ azlan

    ” I will call it another case of a political decision being made acquire stuff without any consideration being placed what the potential end user has to say about the matter ”

    I believe the M109 is a request from the army due to the inability to get any budget for wheeled SPH. I dont think there is much can be done to profit from something like this. Also the Blackhawks was offered as a goodwill by the Brunei Govenment to Malaysia to beef up the defence of East Coast of Sabah. The issue is that the Army and TUDM is not willing to sacrifice what little budget they have to refurbish those blackhawks. Also this happened before the Nuris had to be permanently retired. If they are to get the same offer now, I believe it would be taken without any questions whatsoever (are those retired blackhawks still with Brunei, or already sold to USA like previous Brunei blackhawks?)

  79. @ ASM

    ” Really? So the decision to get Gowinds was forced down the Navy’s throat ? ”

    The navy originally wanted 6 corvettes. The choice of the Gowind design was from whom? I always thought that the BND preferred the Meko 100 with smokestack design. The design enlargement to a frigate and additional budget approval for that was the Navys brainchild and push to the government, which covered the cancellation of F2000 batch 2. The navy wanted and got the NSM as the AShM. The navy wanted Herkales radar and ESSM missiles too, but was replaced by SMART-S and VL Mica (which is what the Gowind is designed for)

  80. ASM – “So the decision to get Gowinds was forced down the Navy’s throat”

    I wouldn’t go as far as saying that as I have no idea as to whether the RMN expressed any objections. The only contender was an enlarged design based on the Meko 100. As far as I know there were no other serious contenders. With the Kedahs about a dozen yards offered their designs.

    ASM – “ Does the design meet the needs of the Navy at all?”

    We’ll i spoke about this in length in a previous post. As the RMN’s mainline combatant; I would have preferred something a bit larger; something with a some free deck and below deck space for future upgrades. As it stands there is no bellow deck space in the B position in the event we want to add VLSs. Nor is there space admidships in the event we want to add SSMs.

    I have no idea if the existing design can be slightly enlarged without any major redesign work. Ideally we would have chose a design that would serve as a common basis (if required) for an enlarged or lengthened Batch 2s.

  81. P.S.

    ASM,

    There is nothing wrong with the actual design. The question really is even if it meets the RMN’s present requirements; for how long will this last? Three perceptions and operational requirements can and do change and the last thing we’d want is the RMN to be tied down to a particular design because of national interests.

    If at a later date the design can be tweaked then fine but if it can’t and the RMN has to go for a different design then the whole exercise of building then here and buying the rights would have been a colossal waste.

  82. …. – “ I always thought that the BND preferred the Meko 100 with smokestack design””

    This was before DCNS entered the picture. It was assumed that despite issues with the NGOPV programme; the German Naval Group would be the lead candidate. In fact; I don’t even know if RFIs were sent out to various yards.

    Reply
    I have written about this years before in Malaysian Defence. I am not sure whether the post is still here. Anyhow, DCNS came into the picture after the RMN declined the Meko design from BNS preferring the Sigma 105.
    BNS went to the PM and appealed for the Gowinds to be selected. When the Gowinds was approved, the navy appealed for changes for the ESSM and NSM. The PM in the end decided to go with MICA and NSM to break the deadlock and get the contract to be signed.

  83. P.S.

    DCNS probably offered a much better or comprehensive deal compared to the Germans. The French off course had much more political pull during that period. Another plus point in their favour was that Gowind has already been designed: unlike the lengthened/enlarged Meko A100 derivative on offer.

  84. With this maybe we can consider to go back to missile corvette from korea that once already been cancelled due to ngv tech closure..i believed at that time the deal was for about usd1.2 billion for 6 ships..either go this way or arm the kedahs..i prefer we go with dsme missile corvette to comfortably replace our kasturis and laksamanas..

  85. Firdaus,

    The Kedahs only have space for 4 SSMs and RAM in the B position. There is little or no space for torps.

  86. @ASM
    “So the decision to get Gowinds was forced down the Navy’s throat”
    Its possible that TLDM drawn up the specs and performance envelope of what the ships they wanted to do, and the Government’s own assessment (I guess thru ROI from the bidders) were that a frigate sized ship will perform as TLDM’s required with some growth potential.

    Now that I think about it, possibly that was also what happened with MKM. TUDM laid out the specs and the Government then went with the most cheapest option; instead of Western plane with Western systems, they got Russian plane with Western systems.

  87. @…
    “I believe the M109 is a request from the army”
    According to Marhalim, the M109 deal was cancelled by request from TDM. I believed they wanted brand new Caesars but there was no money in the kitty so they were forced to go thru the M109s but later threw a tantrum when there was opportunity to scrap the deal. Money-wise I didn’t think it was an issue as the refurb were already underway, we had probably started progressive payments when we cancelled it. That was another waste.

    As for Blackhawks, I think it was the Government then that had cancelled it because we went in thinking it would be given free but as it turns out we have to pay for them. I am guessing even with an attractive price, after being hoodwinked, the Government prefers to save face and walked out.

    Reply
    Work had not started on the M109s when it was cancelled. They need to pay for storage though as the vehicles had been taken out of the US government yard into a private yard where the work to refurbish them would have been done. As I had reported before Brunei had said it will need some payments for the helicopters. It was just that this details were not initially made known to the Defence Ministry.

  88. @Marhalim
    Thanks for the clarification on the M109s. But was there really money allocated for the refurb (not just the usual agree on principal but pokai BS)?

    On the Blackhawks, yup we got hoodwink
    when this condition wasn’t made known initially. A bait and switch deal, and I’m betting Brunei’s asking price wasn’t unreasonable, would still be sore in the mouths. IINM we had put out that Brunei was donating to us, so if we had to UTurn and pay instead, it would have made us look rather silly.

    Reply
    There was a proposal to refurbish them in the US or locally, it never went anywhere. Whether money was allocated for the refurbishment, at that point it was not. Would it be allocated once the M109 was in the country, most likely

  89. … – “I believe the M109 is a request from the army due to the inability to get any budget for wheeled SPH””

    It was a government to government offer. Such offers routinely made via the Defence Attaché’s office at the embassy. Our bean counters saw it as a way out to avoid allocating funds for something new. From the army’s perspective it wanted something with a smaller footprint footprint.

    Operating costs would also have been a concern – tracked vehicles are more expensive and require more maintenance compared to wheeled. Even though the ability to actually do so is dependent on having the needed aircraft available when needed and that it will take several sorties just to lift a single batter plus crews, ammo and equipment; the army would still prefer something which can be air lifted.

    Whilst the norm is indeed for tacked SPHs to accompany tracked manoeuvre units: in our context – our terrain and the tempo which is possibly because of it – as SPH doesn’t necessarily have to be tracked to support tracked manoeuvre units and doesn’t necessarily have to accompany them as they would in terrain which enables manoeuvre units to operate and move at a fast pace or tempo.

  90. So what the best possible solution and scenario here? Complete and operate just only 2 lcs up until infinite future? While the chinese likely not toning down in scs anytime soon? And while our neighbours starting to procure more advanced warship?..mmea opv while its progressing a little better than lcs but its still 1 year late too..

  91. @ firdaus

    missile corvettes are fine if we want to play tough with neighboring navies in 1990, but not against a bigger navy with submarines, and sophisticated anti ship missiles in the future.

    @ azlan

    I believe the sigma corvette was what TLDM preferred at first instead of the meko 100 with smokestacks. That is before the gowind was picked by the government. After the gowind was picked, that is when TLDM convinced the government that the gowind corvette design could be stretched into a frigate with a little bit more budget, and the government agrees and give a higher price ceiling compared to when the program started. It changed from just a follow on class to the Kedahs to a frigate class that would cover the cancellation of the F2000 batch 2 frigates.

  92. @Azlan
    “Thank you for that Marhalim. I had no idea the Sigma had a place in story”

    Yes,
    The sigma 105 and tacticos cms are RMN choice

  93. Stop all the sembang sembang here.
    Rakyat money is in the drain.
    This is not first time. This is planned game to rob frm RMN and rakyat.
    Create Commisioning body to investigate. Head must roll regardsless vip or vvip.
    Does anyone have the balls to do this?
    BNS, trusted them? Doubt is they can built a fishermen trawlers.
    Do your math. Enough reasons.

    B

  94. So better to have something or nothing? 6 lcs already got problemos but still asked for 3 more..seriously..and still wanna transfer kedahs to mmea..really

  95. @ Nan

    ” Stop all the sembang sembang here.
    Rakyat money is in the drain.”

    Who are you to decide what and when to talk?
    Any legal action/investigation/RCI etc.. against Boustead can be done later. Nobody is happy with the situation but it is what it is.

    The priority at the moment is on the incomplete ships as it affects the RMN capability.

    ” Does anyone have the balls to do this?”

    You could have a go. Surely you have the balls to do so.

    @Azlan

    Sigma should be matured design too during the time of the bid, right? This is what I meant by “forcing the decision down the Navy’s throat” — RMN wanted Sigma, then gov went for Gowind instead in favour of BNS appeal. Worse RMN got shortchanged twice, no Sigma, then now no Gowinds too.

  96. @ firdaus

    ” So better to have something or nothing? 6 lcs already got problemos but still asked for 3 more..seriously..and still wanna transfer kedahs to mmea..really ”

    Yes i am dead serious. our state of defence is no joking matter to me. you are no better than a troll here with nothing constructive and positive to contribute. with that i am ignoring you from now on.

  97. ASM – “This is what I meant by “forcing the decision down the Navy’s throat” — RMN wanted Sigma””

    Yes I know you meant. I knew Gowind was a political decision (like so many things we get) but I didn’t know if the RMN actually had any major objections over it and the fact that Sigma had a place in the narrative.

  98. @Marhalim
    “Would it be allocated once the M109 was in the country, most likely”
    Sorry for OOT, but wait a sec. Wasn’t the FMS offer were to get used A3/A4 stocks and upgrade them to A5 (we have to pay for it) before shipping them here?

    Reply
    No lah it was the A5, the old US standard. The vehicles needs servicing as they have been left idled for some time and need new oil and stuff and likely radios to make them serviceable again. A full refurbishment will entail a full hull overhaul, gun barrels and other stuff as well to reset the vehicles age to zero, that will cost more money then

  99. @Nan
    “Stop all the sembang sembang here”

    U also stop sembang2 laa. If i have the position in the defence ministry or military of course i will do something. Unfortunately im just a normal rakyat like u. If dont want to sembang2 then go drink teh tarik somewhere else.

    With the Sigma being mentioned, i have heard from somewhere that the Indonesian have problems/disliked them after getting the Sigmas into service and hence why they want Iver Huitfeldt now. Can anyone explain and clarify? Thanks

    Reply
    AFAIK the navy likes them, the industry likes them as well as two built in country. I believe the requirements now called for a bigger ship hence the look for other options

  100. @Nan
    We are only civvies, the best we can do is sembang makan angin saja. If we had the power, had the authority, do you think we will just sembang saja. We can only hope those in power, those in charge, would read out our sembang2 and pick ideas how to move forward. It is quite clear neither side of the Government had done right to stop this trainwreck from happening. Now we can only hope PN will doing the right thing.

  101. @joe

    I think it’s not about those in power to pick ideas from us here. It’s about us sembang2 louder, to tell them they can’t fool us in defence matters! We need to tell them they can’t keep repeating the NGPV fiasco and expect nobody understands the matter.

    We tell them we’re better than being able to do coffee shop talk. We can plan and calculate.

  102. @Hornet Lover
    I like your optimism, but in truth defence matters is a very niche topic in Malaysia (unless people talk about Scorpene subs that cannot dive and allegedly Mongolian translator), and to actively discuss in a profession way (unlike, say, Kaskus), that is a niche by itself. Will our voices be heard? Maybe, maybe not. The best I can hope is either one of us made Menhan tmrw (is that too optimistic perhaps?) or hope those in power see the logic behind our discussion.

    Reply
    Don’t kid your self lah, no one actually listened to us

  103. @ marhalim

    ” Don’t kid your self lah, no one actually listened to us ”

    hmm… i remember once you had to sensor my replies for quite sometime due to people stealing ideas here to bring up to the top as their own ideas…

    for me, at least we can voice out our ideas, state our displeasures and concerns of the state of our national defence. if those ideas are taken, then it is good for the country. unlike other places where expletives are the norm, you are moderating this to be a place where discussions are civilised. thank you very much marhalim for this, something that most of us can never repay you for.

    Reply
    That’s coz a wannabe wanted to get close to Mindef and think he could do so by stealing ideas from here. He even asked me whether he could do so in an email, of course he will claimed to be his idea of course

  104. @Marhalim
    “AFAIK the navy likes them, the industry likes them as well as two built in country. I believe the requirements now called for a bigger ship hence the look for other options”

    Thanks marhalim. Then the more reason why RMN preferred the SIGMA than other contenders.

    Regarding the Thales TACTICOS cms, i think RMN prefer it over SETIS because they have experience operating it on the Kasturis after their SLEP n thus why they like it. 2 very solid reasons why RMN leans towards certain product (one of which they are currently using) but eventually was not chosen.

    About the Herakhles radar, the difference that i can find is that it operates at 60rpm compared SMART-S 13rpm and 27rpm and it has more function such as built in fire control mode means no need eo director for guiding SAM.

    But, regardless of what we choose it will not change the outcome as we would eventually also reach the same situation.

    Reply
    The Herakles is too much of a radar for the LCS. It will be the obvious choice if we bought the Asters but it wasn’t. Yes one of the reasons that the navy chose the Sigma was because of the CMS

  105. Food for thought…second ship of jose rizal class, brp antonio luna already spotted conducting sea trials..meanwhile here…….

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