New Shipyard in Bagan Datoh

KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is to officiate the new shipyard in Bagan Datoh tomorrow. The ceremony will be conducted after he officiated the Bagan Datoh Umno division meeting headed by its MP and Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The shipyard is reportedly to be the facility to built two of three MPSS to be built for the navy.

NGV Tech Sdn Bhd, is the preferred local partner for the MPSS project and since it had already signed an MOU to purchase a shipyard in South Korea (during Lima 2009), one can surmised that a baby Dokdo would probably be the chosen design.

–Malaysian Defence

If you like this post, buy me an espresso. Paypal Payment

About Marhalim Abas 2141 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Through deck = bad idea. This is all part of the payoff for rescuing the NGPV after the Amin Shah fiasco.

  2. I thought they will choose the real dokdo but at last, they have decided to choose the mini-Dokdo variant. Anyway there is no problem for this to purchase 13 ships where 3 MPSS and 10 training ships at RM 2.2 Billion whereas the local will benefit as well from the project that will need more than 5000 workers.

  3. See the clip for the NGV Tech Sdn Bhd Shipyard launched where PM Najib was there on Sunday… you can see the conceptual MPSS in the background. Unless the screwed up, it seems to look like a LPD17.

  4. Yea lah, i agree with u, look like LPD17, not even baby dokdo design?

    Marhalim: I surmised it will be a Baby Dokdo design, its not written in gold….

  5. LPD17? isn’t that the San Antonio class from the US? How come the deal is coming from S.Korea?
    Well that will be good too i think…but does anyone think the price tag is lower than a frigate/NGPV class ships?

    PS: Plez provide the link for the clip…

  6. Do you guys mean the San Antonio class LPD17?
    Something similiar to that actually makes more sense as the Dokdo has a very large flight deck, more like a mini-carrier.

    Marhalim: Dont rejoice yet, the Type 071 LPD from China also looks similar to the LPD17……

  7. I prefer mistral cos of the tech/ user friendly, less man power and many countries likes it includs russia…..

  8. Mistral is very unlikely as the government, already having awarded France the Scorpene contract, will not award it another big ticket/high profile deal so soon.

    If indeed the MRSS’s are to be built in a Malaysian owned yard in S.Korea the design will probably be a South Korean one. Then again, until it’s sign in ink, nothing is certain.I wonder however, what is the RMN’s preference.

  9. Yes, but are we going to buy some sort of LCU/LCAC to get the stuff ashore? And does it mean that the Mahawangsa and Inderasakti are going to be retired? The main issue with through deck designs is the need for elevators to move the aircraft to and from the hangar deck.
    Steel is not so expensive…it’s the darned mission equipment that is pricey. I hope we use an e4xisting c4i system to avoid yet another one to add to out collection! I’m happy with 30mm cannon.

  10. The big question is whether manpower is a problem and I suspect it is. The Indera Sakti class can probably serve for another 10 years minimum. Both have been in the dry-dock at Lumut and I suspect after the Aden deployment, need to go in again.Equipping the new ships with a 30mm to save ringgit is alright if there is an adequate number of escorts and a strong air umbrella, unfortunately there isn’t.

    Marhalim: I am assuming that the two Inderasakti class ships will be retired once all three MRSS are commissioned into service. With our luck it will be another 15 years.
    On whether there will be a manpower issue or not, I believe what happened during initial period of the NGPV period early 2000/2001 will be repeated. Both NGVtech and BHIC will be fighting over the same set of shipyard workers which was the scenario in 2000/2001 where PSC literally forced Malaysian Shipyard Engineering in Johor to almost a standstill by raiding its engineers and workers. At the moment, I dont think they will be mass exodus to NGVTech just yet as the company has not signed the contract for the MpSS, it is now just a promise. It will be very interesting if both the NGPV Batch II and MPSS projects starts at the same time, then it will be interesting….

  11. I wonder when the govt sign deal 2 or 4 lekiu batch 2 to be built localy in LSE (Labuan) or Sarawak and Sabah Shipyard, these 2 giant state has some maritime shipbuilding potential, i m from Sibu, Sarawak. Here the main industries now is shipbuilding built lot of tug boat, major export to local and overseas and cheaply and quality….Najib does comes and visiting sibu few month ago b4 election, ……….Tanjung Manis can be part of the shipyard industries, if MPSS goes to NGVTech, BHIC continues to NGPV batch 2, other give to Sarawak and Sabah people….

  12. Marhalim, I wasn’t referring to the shipyard workforce but the manpower needed for the 3 multi-Role Supply Ships and the follow on batch of NGPVs. Where are they coming from?

    Off-topic but the Singaporean Leopards it seems have received add on armour against top attack munitions and shoulder launched weapons. Smart move. I’ve always felt that the PT-91s, before entering service, should have been fitted with at least some bar armour near the rear side portion of the hull and to the rear of the turret, this wouldn’t have added much weight and would’nt have been costly. Wonder if the folks at the Armour Directorate have any plans for upgrading the PT-91Ms.
    The million ”ringgit” question for me is whether ERAWA 2 offers protection against KE penetrators. Can’t seem to get an answer anywhere.

    Marhalim: The navy has enough people to man the MRSS and NGPV Second Batch. They will welcome any new ships…..

  13. We do need to stop worrying about trying to conduct phibops a la Falklands under fire from AShMs. Force Protection level measures are quite adequate. Just leave space for gold pate.

    The RMN has had some success in fitting new mission equipment to their existing platforms so there’s no reason why it cannot be programmed in.

    Azlan….that’s ‘Top Secret’.

  14. I surely hope that once these new MRSS\’s are on for the running, the Inderasakti and Mahawangsa can be relegated as auxiliary ship or training ship just like BM 5 or Fajar Samudera.

    They may not fit for another Aden Gulf scenario cruise in the next 15 years but they may still find a logistical role to support troops in Sabah or training needs for both reserve and regular force.

  15. I wasn’t referring to a ”phibops a la Falklands under fire from AShMs”or a red Storm Rising scenario where the threat is multiple bombers with supersonic AShMs and I’d beg to diaagree about ”Force Protection level measures being adequate”. Adequate against what? Gone are the days when the threat was from just fighters with dumb bombs and unguided rockets….

    To spend billions on a high value asset and then choose to save a few million more by fitting it with just a couple of 20mm/30mm guns is a bit silly in my opinion.

  16. Well, the RFA Bay-class LSD(A)s and the Spanish Juan Carlos 1 LHD are only equipped with local control light cannon and MGs. Most of these are designed with space for more serious wartime fit outs but the priority is controlling cost and delivery times.

    Medium guns, missiles etc. are all order of magnitude or two greater in terms of cost.

    I’d much rather spend the money to make them bigger and fit stuff that you can’t do without, like a well dock, bow thrusters etc. as well as some more up to date landing craft.


    Marhalim: Other navies can afford to have lightly armed amphibs as these ships would be working within a large battle group. RMN ships are already lightly armed. But budgetary wise means that the new MRSS will only be lightly armed….

  17. Marhalim, Simon is right in this case. Fat ships are not meant to defend themselves by themselves alone. His approach will ensure that the RMN will get a ship/platform that has the best growth potential.

    As of this moment, as currently resourced, Malaysia can’t fight a war by herself and will have to rely on partners/allies to help her out in contingencies (for at least the next two decades).

    Marhalim: Yes I understand the fact Simon is trying to make, but you must also be aware that none of our ships can actually defend themselves in a heavy threat environment…

  18. The irony of a MPSS being better armed than a NGPV ‘escort’. As long as they leave top weight, deck and internal space for ‘upgrades’, it’ll be OK. Unlike some, I believe in a military we can sustain over the long term. This is not shared by the Navy since it doesn’t seem to have a coherent sustainable and logistics policy. Silliness = lots of divergent combat systems.

    I hope they managed to salvage the R2D2 of the Inderasakti….but I am not hopeful.


  19. The RFA Bay-class and the Spanish Juan Carlos are only lightly armed but the main amphibious/sea lift vessels of the Royal Navy and Spanish Navy – Albion and Galicia- are armed with more than 20/30mm guns and MGs.

    Furthermore, as Marhalim pointed out, these vessels would most certainly be operating under a strong air umbrella, including AEw assets, and have a strong escort screen.

    The term ‘fitted for but not with” is a sexy term, much loved by the pen pushers at the MOF and MINDEF but is useless as by even if a rushed contract is signed, and the stuff hastily delivered and installed, chances are there won’t be a need for it anymore. For the RMN however, who’s most likely operating scenario will be in the waters off Aden and UN deployments, small calibre will be sufficient…. for dealing with pirates, but not for anything more

  20. I heard Italian Navy are planning to get 2 to 3 20,000 tons LHD cost about USD$369 million each…any comment?

    Marhalim: Yes, that mean it will cost around RM1.4 billion tops empty, with the combat systems and aviation assets, you need another RM2 billion at least……I believe its about the same price for a real Dokdo…..

  21. Question for the experts out there,

    Would including MANPADS such as IGLA or ANZA (which we already have in our inventory but under GAPU not Navy)as part of the aerial/ point defence in say the new proposed LHD/LPD or even the kedah Class NGPV is a viable alternatives?

    Marhalim: No lah not in a heavy threat environment. It would be a good idea to install the RAM on the MRSS for point defence at least…

  22. Marhalim…what heavy threat environment would that be? When are we going to conduct phibops against an enemy shore or under enemy air?

    Azlan…it isn’t if you program in the SLEPs and upgrades. That we don’t doesn’t invalidate the idea.

    Jeez, we don’t need ejen-ejen Yehudi or Amriki to torpedo our own plans……

    Marhalim: Yes may never use it but its better try to get some modicum of air defence. With our luck, the specifications will called for 30mm gun but MOF will only fund mounts for Browning. If they asked for RAM, they might get lucky and get a Sadral…..

  23. “Yes I understand the fact Simon is trying to make, but you must also be aware that none of our ships can actually defend themselves in a heavy threat environment…”

    Marhalim, like Malaysia, Singapore’s fat ships also cannot operate in a heavy threat environment. I hope you guys realise that the Endurance Class vessels are equipped with 2Ă— Simbad twin launchers (Mistral missiles) for basic point defence. IMO, the RSN’s fat ships, with their current limitations can only operate in a low to medium threat environment for coalition warfare. Even Singapore relies on the USN (to some extent) to deal with high end threats.

    Marhalim: See my answer for Simon below….

  24. BTW, on 18 Jun 2010, the RSS Endurance deployed to the Gulf of Aden for three-months with CTF-151 ( As you can see, by choice, the RSN operates with the USN in their task groups and therefore taps on their resources, logistics and their technical know how.

    In other news, on 28 June 2010, MV Golden Blessing is a Singapore flagged petroleum and chemical tanker and was traveling to India from Saudi Arabia when it was hijacked. According to Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority the MV is bareboat chartered to Shanghai Dingheng Shipping Co Ltd.

  25. MR T, it’s true, our ships are unlikely given present scenario’s to be confronted by a missile threat. Can we say the same in the future?
    While we’re at it, we must as well save more cash by not installing a chaff/flare launcher… Hell, we can save even more by omitting a CMS. After all, the Indera Sakti class don’t have a CMS.

    The ‘R2D2’ was a total loss, like the ship.

    Marhalim: Yes in our present small budget, big aspirations syndrome, we cannot afford to have amphib ships with little more than pintle mounted machine guns. The MRSS will be basically a ro-ro ship with naval ensigns anyway. To be honest I would prefer the govt fund MISC to purchase/build RO/RO ships which can be used for logistics role in between commercial runs between Port Klang and Europe. It will be cheaper operationally and we will not have aspirations to become a world saver which are the main reason for building the MRSS fleet……

  26. IMHO, the cheapest temporary solutions would to take over currently underutilised commercial RO/RO ships available from the commercial sector. 2ndhand with at least 10-15 years life in them (depending on the size) would priced between RM30 to RM100 million. Based on my involvement in several commercial ship deals, Price of late 80’s to early millennium built commercial logistic ships are in the downtrend due to requirement of new navigation, design and safety requirements and also due to over supply.

    But then you would have to factor in upgrades cost such radar, satcom, maybe few L40/70 or 30 mm and .5 calibre gun, you may have to include another 60-100 million ringgit.

  27. This discussion we’re having on what the MRSS ships will be armed with is purely academic as Marhalim pointed out, they will certainly be armed with nothing more than guns. There’s been much talk about a ‘high threat enviroment’. What constitues a high threat enviroment? Even against a single vessel or aircraft armed with a missile, the MRSS’S will be totally reliant on its escorts if armed just with guns.

    Anyway, lets just hope we don’t order a whole different set of electronics and sensors as that will lead to another logistics/support cockup. The most up to date CMS’s in service with the RMN are the Nautis, COSYS and the TACTICOS which is be installed on the 2 Kasturi class, so hopefuly one of these is selected for the MRSS.

  28. One must remember that our armed forces is modeled based on the idea of protecting our economic interest and not as a power projection forces. The MPSS is mainly intended for the armed forces’ humanitarian mission under the UN command aside from other fighting piracy-mission. We are not modeled our armed forces as a power projection forces. So, heavily armed ships or such a thing is not necessary.

    Marhalim: As far as I am concerned its the wrong model. Our Armed Forces should be funded for our defence. We do not have the luxury of being the saviour of the world. As long as we pay our UN dues on time, I believe it is good enough…

  29. Taxing productive sectors of the economy to fund its non-competitive sectors is exactly why the multiple Obama stimulus plans failed. Why can’t we just buy the San Giorgio hulls off the Italians, seeing that they are building replacements? It’s not like the RMN is alien to Italian hulls. And God knows the Italians are eager to deal with us, having sold us the Lericis and Assads and even trying to fob off the heavily armed Lupos to us.

    Marhalim: I am guessing that the San Giorgios and the Lupos are not equipped with MTU diesels which would have been a great motivator for the deal….

  30. Lat nite berita seems to give more credibility that NGV will built the ships for RMN. But whta type or purpose dunno lah. But i pity Boustead, as in my own personal opinion, malaysia dont have the capacity to handle and have two national maritime defence shipyards. Two have two shipyards and breakeven, malaysia must order new ships at a rate of at least 4-6 a year. The experience for the past 10 years shows, malaysia only order ships at a rate of 1-2 a year max.

    My personal take and opinion, NGV may be awarded with some contracts worth may 3-4 billion. Suddenly finds it cannot properly financed the project cost, then Boustead again will have to rescue the project at the LTAT fund expense.

    Marhalim: No lah, the MRSS will be probably be funded directly by the government while LTAT, the parent company of Boustead will fund the NGV Batch 2, through a Sukuk deal. They will get at least eight per cent return for the RM6 billion, not a bad deal indeed…

  31. Syammer, what constitutes a ‘heavily’ armed ship? If non-combatants such as the MPSS were fitted with anti-ship missiles, such as the Otomats on the Cavour, it would be heavily armed. But a point defence missile system for self defence wouldn’t make it heavily armed.

    Whilst its true that the MAF’s main role is to defend our sovereignty and interests, it does play an important peacetime role. the main value of the MPSS’s in peactime as I understand, would be disaster relief, transportation of heavy equitment to East Malaysia and acting as tenders for other RMN vessels. Whilst ‘UN deployments’ have been used to justify getting MPSS’s, I think its a bit silly as I can’t think of a scenario in the near future where the MAF will deploy in numbers under the UN.

  32. Dear Azlan, it is only my theory and based on my observation regarding the UN’s matter. Thank you for correcting my mistake which I had overlooked about the point-defense matter.

    Anyway, if the govt confirmed to buy the 3 MPSS which is based on any LHD-design like the Dokdo, then we need to buy more heli to equip the naval air wing for the MPSS. Considering the current financial capability, the baby-Dokdo design would not likely be choose by the govt even if the NGV-tech suggest so. But I believe the navy maybe favor with the Dokdo design.

  33. Erk noted marhalim. But does this means that the 2nd batch NGPV will be leased to RMN under a long term lease?

    Interesting. The sukuk is a good idea, EPF with around 120 billion in cash currently would love to get return more than 5%. But for Boustead to make money, the lease should be at least 15 years and with return no less than 12% per annum.

  34. In addition to the San Giorgios, another option has just become available. The RN is about to lose 3 amphibious ships. Plus a couple of recently-refitted Type 23s, which are far more modern and capable than any new-build Lekiu Batch 2’s could ever hope to be.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.