11/06/2024 11:35 AM

From Ahmad Syabil Sultan Noordin Ahmad

ANKARA, June 11 (Bernama) -- The Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) has handed over the Letter of Agreement (LOA) for the purchase of the second batch of three Littoral Mission Ships (LMS) to Turkiye defence company, Savunma Teknolojileri Mühendislik (STM), yesterday.

The handover ceremony was carried out between MINDEF deputy secretary-general (development) Dr Mohd Bakhari Ismail and STM general manager Ozgur Guleryuz witnessed by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin and Turkish Defence Industry Secretary Prof Haluk Gorgun at STM headquarters here.

Mohamed Khaled said the project will take about three and a half years to complete and Malaysia will receive all three ships by the end of 2027.

"We are confident that this project will be completed within the set time because the company is owned by the Turkiye Government chaired by their President, so there is a guarantee from the government," he said at a press conference after the handover ceremony here.

Mohamed Khaled is on a five-day official visit to Turkiye since Sunday.

He said the planning of the Defence White Paper outlines that the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) needs to have 18 LMS to patrol the country's waters which consist of the South China Sea, the Sulawesi Sea, the Straits of Malacca and the Sulu Sea.

"With the acquisition of this second batch of three LMS, it is hoped that it will help us reach the 18 ships needed for RMN. So, the approach of handing over the LOA to Turkiye depends on their ability to complete it within the set time, if it cannot be completed, it will affect all plans," he said.

The construction and equipment of the ship will be carried out in Turkiye involving the cooperation of 50 companies from the Turkish defence sector including Aselsan, Havelsan and Roketsan which will be integrated with advanced systems and equipped with advanced weapon systems, sensors and command and control systems that enable TLDM to carry out various missions effectively.

The second batch LMS is an Ada-class corvette which is a type of patrol and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) vessel equipped with advanced anti-aircraft missiles and has a displacement of approximately 2,500 tonnes, a length of 99.56 metres (m), a keel of 14.42 m and a draft of 3.94 m and is powered by a 31,640 kW (42,430 hp) Renk Codag engine.

With a maximum speed limit of over 26 knots and a cruising distance of 4,000 kilometres at 14 knots, it can accommodate 111 crew and a maximum endurance of 14 days and is also equipped with a helipad and hangar to store and operate ASW helicopters or medium-sized carriers as well as unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).

Earlier, Mohamed Khaled signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two governments regarding Government-to-Government (G2G) procurement for Turkish-Malaysian defence products.

"This kind of MoU has never been made by Malaysia with any country but was made with Turkey because it reflects the close relationship between the two countries in addition to a relationship based on trust, respect and the desire to help each other.

"I believe the signing of this MoU will bring benefits to both countries, especially Malaysia because Turkey is a sophisticated military power today with very good defence technology and is one of the most advanced military asset manufacturing countries in West Asia," he said.

Meanwhile, Mohamed Khaled said to prove their commitment in implementing the MoU, the two countries agreed to establish a special committee that will be formed within the next six months to plan strategic initiatives and monitor the progress of the MoU implementation.


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