KUALA LUMPUR – The acquisition of Armed Forces (ATM) assets under the 11th Malaysia Plan is continued although the country is facing global economic challenges.
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said this included the upgrading of the ‘Nuri’ Sikorsky S61A-4 helicopter, Hercules C-130, Admiral Class Corvette and the acquisition of other assets for the three wings of ATM.
“We are not denying the world, regional and national economic situations are very challenging. But..I am confident we can face this challenge with careful planning by the ministry and ATM.
“It will not affect the core business of ATM, namely, to ensure national security and also give priority to the morale and welfare of our personnel and veterans,” he told a media conference after handing over education excellent awards to children of ATM personnel here, today.
The ceremony saw 230 children of ATM personnel in the Klang Valley, who were outstanding in the Form Three Assessment and Malaysia Evaluation Certificates, being awarded.
In another development, Hishammuddin he said he would be receiving French Defence Minister Jean Yves Le Drian on Tuesday and, among others, was expected to discuss the acquisition of the French Dassault Aviation Rafale company multi role combat aircraft.
He said the decision on the acquisition of the asset which was earlier shortlisted to replace the MiG-29 jet, depended on the financial package offered, other than the final approval from the Finance Ministry.
“In this matter, the ministry will look at the need and will try to get the best financial package,” he said.
On March 2013, Malaysia shortlisted five fighter jets, namely, Eurofighter Typhoon built by the European consortium comprising BAE Systems, EADS and Finmeccanica; Dassault Aviation Rafale; Boeing s F/A 18E/F Super Hornet; Russian made Sukhoi Su-30 and Swedish made SAAB JAS-39 Gripen.
Earlier, he also launched the documentary ‘Helicopter Heroes’ which was about the determination of the crew and pilot of the Nuri helicopters.
The one-hour documentary would be aired on Astro channel 555 or 575 History Channel Asia on Sunday, 10 pm and Monday at 6 am, 11 am and 3 pm. – BERNAMA