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RMAF Expected to Acquire MALE UAS in 2025

KUALA LUMPUR, 3 August – The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) is expected to acquire the Medium-altitude Long-endurance Unmanned Aircraft System (MALE UAS) in 2025 and will begin operations as early as 2026 to strengthen Malaysia’s dominance of the air domain.

Deputy Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Ikmal Hisham Abdul Aziz said, the Ministry of Defence has completed all tender evaluation processes for the procurement of MALE UAS for use by the RMAF.

“The ministry’s procurement board has certified the selected tenderer and it was submitted to the Ministry of Finance (MoF) on 7 July for finalization. Through the latest feedback received from the MoF, the decision of this matter will be known this month,” he said in the Dewan Rakyat, yesterday.

He said, for the ecosystem, maintenance will be carried out after the expiry of the warranty from the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) based on the maintenance concept that will be determined by RMDF.

“While planning for the procurement of weapons through Electronic Warfare (EW) for these assets will be implemented in the second and third procurement phases in the 13th Malaysia Plan (RMKe13) and RMKe16,” he said.

Ikmal Hisham answered a question from Ahmad Tarmizi Sulaiman (PAS-Sik) about the status of tenders, procurement, maintenance and the maintenance ecosystem, the planning of the latest weaponry for unmanned aerial vehicles, the MALE UAS category for use by the RMAF during a question and answer session in the Dewan Rakyat.

While to answer additional questions from Awang Husaini Shahari (Warisan-Putatan) regarding the objective of acquiring MALE UAS and where this aircraft will operate.

He said, the development of MALE UAS capability is based on the RMAF Capability Development Plan 2055 (CAP55) and in line with the 4-Dimensional Development Plan of the Malaysian Armed Forces (4DMAF) to support the Defence White Paper.

“The main objective of MALE UAS is to carry out intelligence, surveillance and survey (ISR) missions to reduce the capability gap in transmitting information in near real time (NRT) to the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM),

“This MALE UAS asset will be stationed at the Labuan Air Base to increase the dominance of the RMAF’s air domain, especially in carrying out surveillance in the South China Sea and the East Coast of Sabah,” he explained.

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