Walk Like An Emirati, Part 2

UAE Bani Yas, the first of two Gowind corvette. Naval Group.

SHAH ALAM: United Arab Emirates has taken delivery of its first Gowind corvette – Bani Yas – in Lorient, France on October 21. Naval Group announced the delivery on November 9. Bani Yas is the first of Gowind corvettes ordered by UAE in 2019. Both ships are built at the Naval Group facility in Lorient.

The release from Naval Group:

The delivery ceremony for the first Gowind corvette, Bani Yas, ordered by the United Arab Emirates to Naval Group took place on 21 October 2023 in Lorient in the presence of an official delegation from the United Arab Emirates headed by His Highness Sheikh Saeed bin Hamdan al Nahyan, Commander of the UAE Navy.

Bani Yas corvette is the first of the two Gowind corvettes ordered by the United Arab Emirates to Naval Group in 2019 and built in Lorient, France. Bani Yas corvette was launched in December 2021, left Lorient on 23 October 2023 and is due to arrive in the United Arab Emirates in early December. The second corvette, Al Emarat, launched on 13 May 2022 at Naval Group’s Lorient site, will soon be starting her sea trials.

“This day marks a symbolic milestone: the delivery of Bani Yas Gowind Combat corvette, first unit of this program. Bani Yas and Al Emarat Gowind Combat corvettes are made to be the best answer to the UAE Naval Forces operational requirements. This program symbolizes our joint commitment to deliver the best and is for sure the first step in a strong cooperation and longterm strategic partnership with the UAE.” said Pierre Eric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group.

Bani Yas class corvettes benefit from the modular design of the Gowind® family and will enable the UAE Navy to meet current and future challenges with the most advanced technologies. As part of Naval Group’s service solutions to meet all the needs of modern navies, the UAE Navy’s crew is trained in the operational use of the vessels.

The commercial success of the Gowind® corvette is significant, with 12 units already selected by various navies and most of the ships locally built through technology transfer and partnerships with the local industry.

The launch of the second UAE Gowind corvette is covered here. UAE has taken delivery of its first corvette within four years while RMN is still waiting for its first, though it was ordered in 2011 and first steel cut in 2014. The first Malaysian Gowind or LCS is only expected to enter service in August 2026. If we are lucky, of course.

— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 2147 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. But must understand Malaysia while no ship but got learning. Eventually, sometime in the very far future, will become self sufficient. UAE? Get ship but no learning, no self sufficiency. Malaysia no money but learn, even tough the course very long cause opportunities are so rare. But no problem willing to pay tuition fee. UAE rich but not willing to pay tuition fee because dont see the value of self sufficiency in shipbuilding, got better things to focus on, so spend the money on other courses.

  2. kel – ”Get ship but no learning, no self sufficiency. Malaysia no money but learn,”

    With a ”guru” like you in our midst it’s a wonder we still have the problems we have.

  3. With a ”guru” like you in our midst it’s a wonder we still have the problems we have. (Quote @kel, Requote @Azlan)
    Hahahaha! The irony is both of you are right from similar or parallel perspectives.
    Malaysia has far too many magic gurus that partner with greedy past and current politicians plus businessmen that never fail to deliver FAILURES.

  4. Taib,

    Ultimately it all goes down to the very system we have in place and the overall attitude we have towards defence.

    The dysfunctional politically driven system we have enabled the cockup to occur and as much as people want to simplistically delude themselves: BNS and its share of the blame is merely part of the overall element; not the sole one.

    – Who’s job was it to certify that BNS was in a sound financial position to undertake the programme?
    – Who insisted that all 6 ships be constructed locally?
    – When it was clear that things were starting to go wrong; why did the decision makers not want to listen?
    – Why did MINDEF not look after the RMN’s interests? It sided with the local industry.
    – Why was the RMN simply told to keep mum?
    – Effective non political corrective measures and oversight might not have prevented the shite from occurring but might have negated it at an early stage; preventing the rot from spreading

  5. Everyone is at fault in the Gowind saga

    – BNS for insisting on something the navy did not want
    – MINDEF for siding with BNS, and not having the balls to decide to proceed when agreeing with TLDM later.
    – TLDM for insisting changes after project has started. Missile & decoy change I agree. IPMS change is the one that stopped the build. It connects to everything and is too risky so why did TLDM insist on such? It also does not effect the lethality of the platform. Without the IPMS change, the ships should have already been completed by now.

  6. As detailed in the PAC report, the IPMS change was mandated as the one originally proposed by BNS was not ready for production. So, they had to decide whether to wait for the IPMS or get something already in production and already in service. The one chosen was similar or upgraded version to the same system already installed on the Kedah class.

    As I had already reported, the delay was not in the equipment changes but the government then in deciding on when to sign off the changes which needed additional funding. They already knew about the delays in 2016/2017 but decided to sit on it. They wanted to sign until the next GE as they already had to endure the bad press about 1MDB and did not want another bola tanggung in their corner. Of course, the GE turn everything upside down. And when the new government was presented with a two billion ringgit or more cost increase, they said no. The rest is history.

  7. … – ”Everyone is at fault in the Gowind saga”

    Yes but the politicians who enabled the conditions/system which enabled the cockup to occur [and others] are primarily at fault. During a different epoch; we got what we actually needed and didn’t pay an arm and leg. The 1980’s onwards as the country was on the road to development/industrialisation; the rot started spreading. Defence [like other sectors] became part of the patronage system; priority was not the end user or taxpayer; unlike in the past and we got into the ‘self sufficiency” business; ostensibly for security needs but it made a few very rich and bled the taxpayer. We also got infected with hubris and delusion.

    … – ”and not having the balls to”

    What has testicles got to do with anything? It’s part of the ‘yes man’/’bodek’ culture – do what you’re told and don’t rock the boat.

    … – ”BNS for insisting on something the navy did not want”

    Add that to the list of various local companies specifying [being allowed to]; what the services get.

    … – ”Missile & decoy change I agree.”

    NSM was selected at an early stage; so was Mica.

  8. NSM was changed at the insistence of the then PTL, who fought hard for it, together with ESSM, which in the end the PM then decided to give him the win though he lost out on the MICA. The ESSM Mark 1 need an extra illuminator for terminal guidance which will cost more than the MICA. Though in hindsight, he should have gone with Exocet, really.

  9. From what I heard a factor in NSM being selected is that spares and support are cheaper compared to MBDA. Unless I’m mistaken the change to NSM came at a very early stage and did not contribute to any overall delay.

    To me NSM looks more promising compared to a latest Exocet Block. As for ESSM it was also the preferred choice years earlier for the Lekiu Block 2s; supposedly more exprensive compared to Mica and definitely only available via FMS.

  10. Another thing that may not have been front page is, when the contract with DCNS was signed, according to the Forensic Report, DCNS was only meant to have a role valued at EUR59 million, a value consistent with the “we design, and you review” approach. DCNS’s contracted amount rose to EUR219 million or RM878 million by 2012. The latest PAC update states of the RM2.09 billion additional funding, RM210 million is for design – not sure if to pay for additional work, or to pay for the VOs issued. The CEO simply stating BNS has 11 months to complete the balance 4% of the detailed design… Does the 11 months include Naval Group review, which stand at 84% completion? So, LCS1 downslip is set for May 2024, Harbour Acceptance Test by November 2024, but BNS has until August 2024 to finish the 4% detailed design. Does August 2024 include Naval Group sign off on 100% of the detailed design?

  11. “NSM was selected at an early stage; so was Mica”

    NSM is TLDM want, MICA is Naval Group original offer (TLDM, like the UAE navy originally wants ESSM). But from PAC we can see that a VO was needed for NSM, so the original offer and approval was for Exocet all along.

    anything that needs VO = not as per original agreement.

    Decoys was wallop super barricade, but changed to sylena mk2 (this is due to the prior supplier is bought over by the new supplier)

    @ marhalim

    “And when the new government was presented with a two billion ringgit or more cost increase, they said no. The rest is history”

    The cost increase at the time is very minimal (less than hundreds of million ringgit) but the new government not only do’t want to spend not a single sen more, but are expecting serious cost cutting from the LCS project (as is from all projects at the time). LCS cannot give any cost cuts, so no decisions on anything was done for the LCS project. At the time TD offered M109 SPH for sacrifice (original offer of MD530G was too watertight to cancel), TUDM SU-30MKM maintenance (until “only 4 can fly” scandal surfaces and the budget reinstated), TLDM the biggest cost cutting target was the LCS.

  12. … – “NSM is TLDM want, MICA is Naval Group original offer (TLDM, like the UAE navy originally wants ESSM”

    Aware of that but thank you…
    Like I said; it was selected at an early stage. Didn’t contest the fact that Exocet was initially the main contender:

  13. @hulubalang
    “TUDM SU-30MKM maintenance”
    Incorrect. TUDM offered the 4.5gen MRCA. We were so very close to signing the Rafale back then until GE14 hit. MKM maint backlog was due to MH17 agenda.
    TLDM offering for sacrifice was LMS #3&4 to be made locally and instead was all done in land of Covid19 for a measly saving. LCS was different kettle as it hit a budgetary shortfall which PH Govt then did not play ball. And subsequently the cost piles up…

  14. As far as I’m aware the decision to scrap the Rafale deal [befote that Typhoon] was made well before GE 14 and was because reality kicked us in the face : insufficient funding to cover all that was earmarked.

    The delay with the MKM depot level overhaul was due to late funding and was in the 2017 period. MH 17 I believe was in 2014.

  15. … – “ TUDM SU-30MKM maintenance (until “only 4 can fly” scandal surfaces and the budget reinstated”

    It wasn’t the 1st time funds for upkeep were delayed; merely the 1st time it made the news. In the early 2000’s overhauls and a spares package for the Hawks was delayed for a considerable period and in the late 1990’s at one stage we were critically low on spares for for the Fulcrums.

    As it stands we have a history of buying things but not ensuring adequate sustainment funds are made available. Things get even worse with the MMEA: smaller than the RMN; even more more under resourced and the unlike the RMN hasn’t been able to take the 1st steps towards reducing its considerable logistical/support footprint.

  16. “the decision to scrap the Rafale deal was made well before GE 14”
    I cant confirm if this was general public knowledge, certainly it wasnt announced yes or no, and AFAIK under PM Najib there was huge traction to go with French stuff (Scorpene, Gowind, LG1, Caesar, Rafale, and Peugeot was one of Proton’s suitors), prior that Macron even came to make a final push.
    All I knew there was no official commitment yet or anything signed, but the noises I heard points toward Rafale being a certainty until GE14.

  17. The MRCA deal was scrapped way before GE 14 and it was Chirac who visited and pushed for Rafale. Dassault offered local assembly and a ToT/offset of a level not offered by BAE Systems with its Typhoon bid. Yes Rafale was the main contender and the government even said so but funding issues came into play.

    Najib merely followed the policy of his predecessor in favouring the French; i.e. Caesar was first displayed at LIMA 1999 and the LG1 offered years earlier. Mahathir was also at Bastille Day

  18. Yes; my mistake: Hollande not Chirac.

    The offer first came in 2012 [the same year a Typhoon mock up was at DSA and the Open Day at Subang] and gained traction in 2014; the French thought they had it in the bag. They offered the usual off set and transfer of technology package; the possibility of local assembly and a finance package over a 10 year term; provided by a French bank and guaranteed by the French government. Hollande came in 2017 hoping we’d order a few but at a joint press conference Najib said we were not ready to buy Rafale.

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