NWI - Naval Warfare

DSA 2018: China offers multirole ship design to Malaysia

17th April 2018 - 02:00 GMT | by Wendell Minnick in Kuala Lumpur


China is offering Malaysia a co-build option for the Royal Malaysian Navy’s requirement for a Multi-Role Support Ship (MRSS), a design loosely based on a landing helicopter dock (LHD) vessel design by a Chinese shipbuilder. 

A company source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation (BHIC), a Malaysian shipbuilder, was in early talks with the China Shipbuilding & Offshore International Company (CSOC) on the possibility of providing the RMN with such a platform for its '15-to-5' naval modernisation effort.

The co-build MRSS option could be similar to the joint BHIC-CSOC programme for RMN’s four Littoral Mission Ships (LMS), a contract announced in 2016. 

The final design for the LMS is fixed, and the first steel cutting will occur in late Juy in China. Delivery of the first Chinese-built LMS will take place in December 2019, and the second in March 2020. Under the agreement BHIC will build the remaining two with commissioning scheduled for 2021.

There is the possibility that the RMN will go forward with a second order from BHIC for an additional 14 LMS vessels, but no decision has been made, the source said.

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