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Malaysia selects radios from Rohde & Schwarz for Keris class

The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) is replacing the Chinese-supplied radios on its three Keris-class littoral mission ships (LMS) with those from German electronics manufacturer, Rohde & Schwarz.

Information published on the Malaysian finance ministry's procurement website indicate that the contracts are worth USD115,000 each. However, there are no details about which model was selected for the contracts.

Malaysia issued separate requests for bids in August and September 2021, seeking to modify or repair the ultra high frequency/very high frequency (UHF/VHF) radios on the China-supplied LMSs. However, a further read of these RFBs reveal that the country is replacing the vessels' Chinese-made radios with completely new equipment.

As Janes reported in October 2020, the RMN has compiled a list of deficiencies that were observed on the first-of-class, Keris, and the issues encountered largely revolve around its Chinese-supplied sensors and combat systems.

The four-vessel Keris-class was originally worth approximately MYR1.17 billion (USD290 million) and signed between the Malaysian government and China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSSC) in 2017.

Keris was commissioned in January 2020 while the second vessel, Sundang, was commissioned in March 2021. The third vessel, Badik, arrived at the Kota Kinabalu naval base in September 2021 and an induction ceremony is expected in October 2021.

The final vessel is in Shanghai undergoing its sea trials and it is expected to sail home for its commissioning ceremony in December 2021.

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