SHAH ALAM: More on the LMS, Part 2. It appears that the negotiations for the LMS is going well and its expected that the contract (or Letter of Award, the official term) could be signed at the next LIMA in Langkawi this March. The LOI for the project was awarded to Boustead Naval Shipyard last November.
RMN Chief Admiral Ahmad Kamarulzaman Badaruddin said this to Malaysian Defence yesterday in Kuantan when asked about the progress of the program. He said they were still negotiating over some equipment offered by China for the ship. He did not specify the items.
He confirmed that the LMS will be fitted with guns only, 30mm auto-cannons to be exact. “The guns are much better than our old Bofors guns, these can fire in all weather and night ” he said nodding in agreement when I said “the old Spray and Pray” in reference to the Bofors.
More importantly he said the ammunition for the China-made 30mm guns are “cheap”. He did not identify the guns however but it is likely that it will be either the H/PJ14(CS/AN2) or H/PJ17 both manufactured by China’s firm Norinco.
These guns – similar to the Aselsan SMASH 30mm (contracted for MMEA’s NGPC) and DSi 30mm (LCS) – are chambered for the 30 X 173mm long, the same ammo for the Denel cannon on the Gempita and for the cannon fitted on the USAF A-10 Warthogs (not the DU ones of course) as well as the SMASH and DSI guns.
Hopefully, the 30mm guns will be the secondary armament for the LMS as the main gun shown in the CGI of the ship released by RMN previously showed that it was a 76mm gun, most likely the PJ26 type 76mm naval gun.
The Durjoy class LPCs- from which the LMS is derived – operated by the Bangladesh Navy have two secondary guns, most likely 30mm guns, mounted port and starboard on the aft deck.
It will be weird to say the least if the LMS – a bigger variant of the Durjoy-class – has a smaller main gun.
By the way, our latest ship, KM Pekan will be among the first ship to carry the title “Malaysia Coast Guard” when it arrived in March, for LIMA 2017. I was told that the APMM/MMEA title will no longer be applied to the agency’s assets (aircraft and ships) as the designations were confusing to un-trained observers.
However, the Agensi Penguatkuasaan Maritim Malaysia will still be used as the agency’s official name as it is the name specified under the 2004 Act approved by Parliament.
* this post was updated to add the pictures of PMSA Hingol and the 30 X 173mm round.
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