SHAH ALAM: Back in September 2022, it was reported that LTAT – the Armed Forces pensions fund – had signed an MOU with UAE-state owned arms conglomerate, the Edge Group, for collaboration in defence capabilities and solutions.
The MOU signing was the highlight of the visit by the then Defence Minister DS Hishammuddin Hussein to UAE. Bernama reported that
the MoU covers the exploration of opportunities for closer collaboration between LTAT and the EDGE Group in supporting various forms of defence capabilities and solutions as well as identifying potential joint investments in the strategic and defence industries in Malaysia.
“Representing the Malaysian government, I am proud and amazed to see the determination of the UAE government to develop its defence industry to a very encouraging level.
“The signing of the MoU has made my official visit to the UAE very meaningful due to the strong commitment of the Malaysian-UAE governments to empower the Malaysian defence industry,” he said in a statement.
Despite the statement, no further ties were developed as the-then administration called for the general election which in turned led to the current PMX administration. On May 23, as it participated at LIMA 2023, the Edge Group announced that it had signed an agreement with Malaysian-company Ketech Asia Sdn Bhd for the production and resale of Caracal CAR 816 assault rifle in Malaysia.
Malaysian Defence was told at LIMA 2023 (on the same day, several hours before the release was published) that the Army was planning to replace its Colt M4A1 Carbines with the Edge Caracal CAR 816 assault rifles.
This week, Malaysian Defence was informed that the 4X4 vehicles manufactured by Nimr – another company under the Edge Group – is likely to be selected to meet an Army requirement dubbed the New Malaysian Light Tactical Vehicle (NMLTV).
The 4X4 is likely the Nimr Ajban Mk 2 Blast which the company described as a Protected Light Tactical Patrol Vehicle. Nimr said the AJBAN MK2 is a 4×4 ballistic and blast protected light tactical patrol vehicle fora crew of five. This multi-role capacity vehicle is constructed with a V-hull unit structure for effective mine-blast protection and a ballistic-protected rear cargo compartment. Capable of accommodating a roof-mounted self-defence weapon, the vehicle also has full-time four-wheel drive powered by a diesel, water-cooled turbocharged engine. A central tyre inflation system (CTIS) allows tyres to be inflated or deflated to meet terrain
conditions. Modularisation means the entire power pack, including cooling, engine, transmission and
transfer case, can be removed and replaced with rapid turn-around.
The original version of Ajban was displayed at DSA 2018. If both projects (NMLTV and Caracal AR) are signed off, the contracts are expected next year. These are among the two projects the new KSU – when he or she is appointed – need to get to the final line next year, among other things of course.
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