ALOR GAJAH: The purchase of 18 FA-50 light combat aircraft worth RM4.08 billion from South Korea, has taken into account various factors, especially the country’s needs including aspects of strategy, policy and the Defense White Paper (KPP).
Deputy Minister of Defense, Adly Zahari explained that apart from that, the aspect of expertise in operating the aircraft and the current economy of the country, are also considered so that the purchase of the assets involved can be fully utilized for the Malaysian defense industry.
“Many factors are taken into account before we make a decision to buy an asset. Therefore, when we have made a decision through transparent procurement, the most important thing is that we can ‘deliver’ to the end user.
“Most importantly, the national defense aspect can be taken care of, sovereignty can be defended and at the same time, we can have confidence in these assets within the specified period,” he told reporters after launching the Alor Gajah Parliament People’s Service Center, here, today.
Based on the evaluation of the Ministry of Defense before the decision to purchase the relevant assets was made, he said, the FA-50 light combat aircraft produced by Korea Aerospace Industries Co (KAI) was the best.
Last Friday, Bernama reported that KAI, which is South Korea’s sole aircraft manufacturer, won an aircraft agreement worth US$920 million (RM4.08 billion) from Malaysia and the delivery of the aircraft is expected to begin in 2026.
Citing a statement from the Yonhap news agency, KAI reportedly signed an agreement with the Malaysian Ministry of Defense to export 18 FA-50 light combat aircraft, thereby excluding Tejas (India), JF-17 (Pakistan), MIG-35 (Russia) and Hurizet ( Turkish).
Meanwhile in other developments, Adly said, the Ministry of Defense will ensure that the welfare of the family, especially the parents of the Army member from the Special Operations Group (GGK), Lance Corporal Edrin Baintim who drowned during training, is always protected.
“Previously, the Minister of Defense has ordered the administration to see all aspects of assistance needed or the rights that victims’ families deserve, expedited.
“The victim (Edrin) sacrificed for the country, and of course ensuring the welfare of the family will be our priority,” he said.
Last February 7, Edrin was reported missing while undergoing diving training 0.7 nautical miles southwest of Pulau Undan, here.
The victim underwent ‘Pari Harimau’ exercise training, which is a diver course, together with six officers and 37 participants from the Special Warfare Training Center (Pulpak), Sungai Udang.
His body was found by people stranded and fully dressed in a diving suit, on the mangrove beach of Tanjung Sepat, Selangor, at 10.15am on February 19. – BERNAMA