SHAH ALAM: Light At The End Of…Despite the doom and gloom it appears that the government is willing to fund the military’s wish list though it remains unclear what will actually be green lighted. Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu says the government will not cut budget allocation to the military. The New Straits Times in a June 30 report says the military will be spared budget cuts despite revisions to the country mega infrastructure projects.
The story is not available online currently though the Defence Ministry has put up a screenshot of the interview on its social media pages.
Once its available online I will include it in the post. Anyhow from the article we know that the Defence Ministry is talking with the Treasury for the 2019 budget allocation. However it is interesting note that the article only mentioned RMAF programs namely the MPA, LCA and MRCA.
Mat Sabu says that the government priority was the MPA project which are among the programs put on hold pending a review of the country’s finances.
As the MPA is already a program record, it could be restarted quickly. Perhaps once the ministry is assured of funding for the project it will be prudent to allow the RMAF to issue RFI or RFP as soon as possible without waiting for the budget to be announced. This will allow the decision to award the tender for the project within the next 12 months. This is of course dependent on the government allowing manufacturers to bid directly for the program instead of the old practise of having it tendered to local companies only.
Mat Sabu is also agreable with the RMAF plan to push ahead with the purchase of the LCA ahead of the MRCA. Unlike the MPA, the LCA is yet to be a program of record so it must clear the hurdles at the ministry and Treasury before funds could be allocated.
However with the MRCA supposedly being funded within seven years time, RMAF plans to have six LCA a year (three squadrons in total of 36 aircraft) before the introduction of the new fighters and the retirement of the MB-339CM (ASAP) and Hawks (by 2025) are looking good. That said it will just a pipe dream until the money is budgeted for it.
— Malaysian DefenceIf you like this post, buy me an espresso. Paypal Payment