Not an LMS Batch 2 Candidate

Algerian Navy Type 056 corvette El Moutassadi at the National Hydrogrpahic Centre on March 3 2023.

SHAH ALAM: Not an LMS Batch 2 candidate. An Algerian Navy El Moutassadi – pennant number 940 – corvette came alongside the National Hydrographic Centre at Port Klang on March 3. The ship likely stopped here for refuel and rest break following its delivery from China. Algerian Navy previous visit to Malaysia.

Yes, El Moutassadi is a China-made Type 056 corvette which easily fits into the LMS Batch 2 requirements. Though as Malaysian Defence has posted before, RMN did not want its latest vessel to come from that country.

El Moutassadi being eased to the jetty of the National Hydrographic Centre. RMN

It is unclear what Type 056 variant is the Algerian corvette, but it is said to be an improved variant of the C13B corvette of the Bangladesh Navy and the Nigerian Navy’s P18N OPV. The Bangladeshi ships (four) is ninety metres long and has displacement of 1,330 tonnes while the Nigerian ones (two) are longer at 96 metres and a displacement of 1800 tonnes.
Algerian Navy El Moutassadi along the National Hydrographic Centre on February 3, 2022. RMN

From the pictures posted by the centre, the Algerian corvette looks like Bangladeshi ones and the same type of weapons. It has a 76mm main gun, four surface to surface missile launchers, two ASW rockets launchers and a single FL-3000 SAM launcher. The FL-3000 is the China version of the US/German RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile launcher.
Algerian Navy Adhafer corvette at berth at BCC in October, 2015. Adhafer is the first C28A corvette for Algeria. www.malaysiandefence.com

It must be noted that it is likely that Algerian corvette like its Bangladeshi and Nigerian counterparts , was built at the Wuchang shipyard in Wuhan. Just like our own LMS. The Type 056 and Type C28A corvettes were among the China ships offered to Malaysia around 2015 and 2018 before the government decided on the LMS Batch 1 design.
A model of the Algerian Navy C28A corvette displayed at DSA 2014. www.malaysiandefence.com

China has built 72 of the Type 056 corvettes of which twenty-two has been handed down to its coast guard. It has also been reported that the corvette was developed from the Pattani-class corvette built by the Wuhan shipyard for the Royal Thai Navy in 2002.
Algerian Navy corvette, Ezzadjer at Boustead Cruise Centre, Port Klang in July, 2016.

Wikipedia page on the Type 056 corvette claimed the Argentinian version of the ship cost US$50 million each or RM223 million (at the current exchange rate). If we get the corvette as the supposed-budget of LMS Batch 2 (RM2.4 billion) we can get ten of them with extra spare change. That said with our perennial problems of leakages, a Type 056 corvette may well cost us RM450 million per ship. The Keris class ship costs us some RM1.048 billion or RM350 million each

— Malaysian Defence

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Shah Alam

21 Comments

  1. Honestly what is the hold up with the winner of the LMS 2.0? After all the funds have already been approved right? And aren’t we doing it G2G this time around which means no more time consuming tenders?(correct me if I’m wrong) Surely by now RMN and Govt have chosen which country to build the ships, so why haven’t we heard of anything yet? Are they waiting until LIMA 23 or are negotiations still ongoing and we might see who the winner is soon?

  2. It is likely the negotiations before were just on the technical stuff as no money had been allocated. Only when the money has been allocated can the negotiations go further, and that was some ten days ago. The budget itself had not been passed yet. I doubt it will be announced at LIMA 2023. But who knows, it might be the surprise package

  3. Jason – ”After all the funds have already been approved right?”

    ”Funds approved” and ”funds allocated” are profoundly different.

    Jason – ” Surely by now RMN and Govt have chosen”

    The RMN may have ”chosen” but have other entities/departments/ministries done the same?

    Jun – ”How this corvette will fair on Philippine Corvette HDC-3100 of HHI.”

    Making direct comparison between ‘X’ and ‘Y’ are really pointless. How anything will fare against something else depends on various factors. Is the crew ell trained; who detects who first; is one platform operating on its own against another operating in conjunction with others and fully networked; etc.

  4. Question:
    The Kedah class are corvette size. Why not use some of the money to upgrade and arm them as the LMS. Then, the gun only Keris class can be NPV as per the 15 to 5. Does that make sense?

  5. Tom Tom,

    – Arming the Kedahs does not do away with the fact that extra hulls are needed.
    – The Kedahs from Day One only have enough deck space for 4 SSMs amidships and a non deck penetrating launcher in the B position.
    – There is also the practical question of whether spending that amount of cash on a class of a certain age is a cost effective solution or presents a sound ROI.
    – Fully arming the Kedahs with anything other than MM-40s and RAM entails the need for integration and certification.

  6. Tom tom “The Kedah class are corvette size. Why not use some of the money to upgrade and arm them as the LMS.”

    Not exactly plug & play I guess. One Would still need to pay for the Intergration cost. That why I think meko A100 is a great choice as the Intergration cost for newer missiles on the meko can be roles on to existing Kedah.

    If other ship are choosen then by 2035 the Kedah would either need to be retired or rehulled but continue floating as an overpriced OPV.

  7. Zaft – “Not exactly plug & play I guess”

    If it’s MM-40 and RAM it is “plug and play” as the ship from Day One was intended to be fitted with both.

    Zaft – “Intergration cost for newer missiles on the meko”

    To COSYS and the new directors.

  8. There are rumors that Indonesia has been offered used 056 corvettes by China at very low prices that they are reconsidering their original plan to get used pohang class corvettes and redirect the approved budget for the chinese corvettes instead.

    The 056 corvettes are much more newer and arguably more capable than the pohang, and if they can get it for same cost, that would be a no brainer for sure.

    Also now more 056 corvettes will be sailing in white by the chinese coast guard. We should do the same, and paint our kedah and keris class ships in MMEA colours.

  9. By the way Marhalim, are the CN 235 MPAs now operational? When are the ANkA and ATRs going to be delivered?

  10. Wong – ”The 056 corvettes are much more newer and arguably more capable than the pohang”

    The 056 corvettes are a generation ahead of the Pohang whose design stretches back to the 1980’s. As for which is more capable; depends on the operational circumstances. A frigate which entered service in the mid 1970’s but is operating alongside other assets would have an edge over a frigate dating from the 2000’s which has longer range sensors and weapons but is operating alone or on a platform level.

    Wong – ”We should do the same, and paint our kedah and keris class ships in MMEA colours.”

    Why in heaven’s white roses for? Utter nonsense.

    Both as you’re aware are RMN assets and both will not be transferred anytime soon [this issue in the past was harped on by ‘…’] to the MMEA which does not have the resources to operate them and in fact does not want them. If PLAN ships start arriving do we then paint them back grey? Just because both classes are armed only with guns and just because they confront Chinese para military ships painted in white doesn’t mean we should resort to the highly ludicrous exercise of painting them white.

    Yes, yes it’s the MMEA which is the agency tasked with safeguarding the EEZ [not as if the RMN can’t let go so to speak] but until such time as it has the resources only the RMN can help fill the gap so to speak and even if the MMEA had 1,000 OPVs [painted white naturally] the RMN [like all other navies] would still have non fighting peacetime roles.

  11. Kedah while not equipment with missiles are still a surface combatants with the ISTAR & cooperative engagement capabilities of one. which is why its operations cost is high.

    Throwing away all of those equipment to make it cheap to operate just to paint it white mean we lose a perfectly fine ISTAR platforms. It’s old no doubt but as a platform it is still relevant as The ship can still be modernize. The 056 may not be.

    PLA like the maritime state along the first Islands chain ultimately goal is to have air & sea dominance. But Unlike the maritime states the Chinese are operating far away from the mainland. They unlike the maritime states need ship with legs as there’s no friendly port around. they are also in their view, operating in hostile environment, They unlike the maritime states can’t relied on public Infrastructure. Access to a public airport radar & it runway goes a long way. they unlike the maritime states may not have the luxury of air cover,They also has to be careful about shore base anti ship missiles. Then they have to worries about NATO navies because the maritime states can have cooperative engagement capabilities with one another as well as foreign military. They can pretend to be neutral but spy on behalf of another or they can gang up together.

    Economics wise they are at a technological & experience disadvantage thus their gov like building ship to increase their R&D capabilities as no one else wants to sell them military stuff. They & SK are ship building capital of the world while we together with SG,ID are the refit, repurposed hub for ship. So it’s no brainer for PLAN to move on onto bigger newer ship rapidly & old ship are transferred to CG or friendly countries. Just because sometimes is logical to them doesn’t mean it is logical to us and thus we have to respond similarly. Meet & greet the Chinese are important but it shouldn’t distract us from our ultimate goal.

  12. zaft – “Kedah while not equipment with missiles are still a surface combatants with the ISTAR & cooperative engagement capabilities of one. which is why its operations cost is high”

    Was it you who said something about “lalaland”? What “ISTAR & cooperative engagement capabilities” are fitted to the class? I’m eager to know.

    zaft – ”PLA like the maritime state along the first Islands chain ultimately goal is to have air & sea dominance.”

    What ”maritime state along the first Islands chain” which wants to ”have air & sea dominance”? The PLA wants to contest U.S. dominance and the artificial reefs in the area are to help it project power in the area and break out of the First Island Chain.

    zaft – ” But Unlike the maritime states the Chinese are operating far away from the mainland.”

    Like how I insist you do your research before churning out ludicrous things; look at a map. Depends on where they are; they aren’t always ”operating far away from the mainland” and even if they are; the artificial reefs they have go a long way in sustaining things; rest, maintenance, refuelling,etc. Also, a MPA from Hainan can be over Mischief Reef in hours and can operate from the various reefs with runways.

    zaft – ”Meet & greet the Chinese are important but it shouldn’t distract us from our ultimate goal.”

    I havo no idea what your ultimate goal” is and don’t want to know but ours is to have a minimal deterrent capability based on the resources we have and to adequately be able to meet our peacetime operational commitments. We are also cognisant of the fact that the types of threats we can handle are very limited and that’s why we engage with various countries.

    Also, a reminder; we can raise the budget by a tenfold but we would still not be able to deal with the PLA on a kinetic level

  13. Dundun,

    The only thing I know about the Nigerian navy is that like us they are a Lerici operator.

    A lot of users have various issues with Chinese stuff but we have to be selective when forming conclusions because problems are encountered with Western stuff too and like everyone else; what one gets from China is what one’s willing to pay and what one specifies. Gone are the days when Chinese yards produced stuff like the RTN’s Chao Praya Chao Praya class. Low quality steel; poor DC standards; etc.

  14. Chinese stuff is much cheaper than the western but why RMN seems to avoid selecting them, except for the conflict of the South China Sea, is another question we need to consider.

  15. The SCS is the only issue preventing us from buying more things from China. Buying more stuff from them will render compatibility issues moot.

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