The Royal Malaysian Navy is expected to receive the remaining two littoral mission ships (LMS) in August and November this year.
Navy chief Admiral Mohd Reza Mohd Sany said the first LMS (KD Keris), received last year, had joined the navy fleet on Jan 17 to carry out patrol and maritime surveillance duties, while the second LMS (Sundang) was received on Jan 14.
He said all the LMS would join the 11th LMS Squadron to carry out search and rescue efforts and to enforce Malaysian maritime law.
The LMS is part of the navy’s “15 to 5″ fleet transformation programme, which involves reducing its current 15 classes of vessels to just five: the LMS, multi-role support ships (MRSS), littoral combat ships (LCS), patrol vessels (PV) and submarines.
“The navy will also receive three maritime operations helicopters in stages, starting next year,” he said in his 2021 New Year message today.
He said the first of the three helicopters would be delivered on Oct 30, 2022, the second unit on May 31, 2023 and the last on Feb 28, 2024.
He also said six of the 12 ScanEagle vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) have been delivered while the remaining six will be received in June this year.
“It is in line with the development plan and future operational needs of the navy, apart from planning to implement procurement through the 12th Malaysia Plan from this year until 2025,” he said.
He said the navy had been allocated RM2.9 billion this year, an increase of RM164 million (5.96%) compared to last year.
“Of the total, RM1.683 billion is allocated for operating expenditure and RM1.233 billion for five development expenditures.”
He also advised navy personnel to be ready to open their minds to changes in order to become a credible naval force.