SHAH ALAM: The third Littoral Mission Ship (LMS) for the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) has been launched. The ship -pennant number 113 – was launched at the Wuchang Shipbuilding Industry Group (WISG) shipyard in Wuhan, China on 28 October, the RMN said in a release.
It said the ship would now undergo acceptance trials in Wuhan prior to delivery planned in September 2021. The completion came just six months after Wuhan was released from a lockdown on April 11 following the spread of the coronavirus.
Wuhan – where Covid 19 was first detected in late 2019 – was put under total lockdown on January 23. The lockdown meant that the launch of both ships were delayed by about two months at least.
RMN also said the third LMS will be named when the ship is delivered in September 2021. It said the fourth LMS is expected to be launch next month. As for KD Sundang, the RMN did not state any date for its delivery.
As you are aware the ship was supposed to sail home in April but its delivery was delayed indefinitely due to the travel restrictions imposed following the pandemic.
RMN said Sundang will only be delivered once the crew of the ship completed their familiarisation training. It did not say when this was supposed to take place. Sundang it appears remained at Qidong, Shanghai where she and her sister ship, KD Keris had conducted their sea trials. Keris as you are aware was delivered to RMN at Qidong.
The government signed a contract with Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) for the supply of the four LMS, in 2017. BNS contracted with China Shipbuilding & Offshore International Corporation (CSOC) for the design and manufacture of the LMS. Originally two of the LMS were to be built in China with another two built at the BNS facility in Pulau Jerejak, Penang.
However a revision of the contract terms in early 2019 saw the contract price reduced and the last two LMS to be built in China.
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