KOTA KINABALU: The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN)’s first littoral mission ship (LMS), the KD Keris, arrived safely at the RMAF Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, from China this morning.
Navy chief Tan Sri Mohd Reza Mohd Sany said the vessel had set sail to Malaysia on Jan 8.
“The LMS acquisition project has paved a new dimension in the RMN’s preparedness to fulfill its increasingly broad and challenging role to protect the security and sovereignty of national waters, especially in Sabah and Sarawak waters.
“As a maritime nation, the safety of our waters is of utmost importance and must be given priority to ensure stability and security are maintained, so that maritime and economic activities can be realised smoothly,“ he told reporters after the welcoming ceremony for KD Keris here today.
The ceremony was officiated by Yang di-Pertua Negeri Sabah Tun Juhar Mahiruddin.
The construction of KD Keris started on July 31, 2018 in Wuhan, China, and was launched by Normah Alwi, wife of Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu, on April 15, 2019.
Mohd Reza said the LMS was one of the five classes of ships in TUDM’s ‘15 to 5’ fleet transformation programme.
The acquisition contract for four LMS was signed between the Ministry of Defence with Boustead Naval Shipyard Sdn Bhd (BNSSB) on Mar 23, 2017, in collaboration with China Shipbuilding & Offshore International Co Ltd (CSOC).
This was the first major defence acquisition project from China, with the second ship, Sundang, scheduled to be handed over in April 2020, while the third and fourth ships are expected to be handed over in mid 2021. — Bernama