GEMAS: There are no plans to purchase new military assets in the near future. This includes replacements for the Royal Malaysian Air Force's MiG-29N Fulcrum aircraft, said Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
Instead, the ministry will conduct a study for possible replacements for the multi-role combat aircraft for future purposes. Zahid said the government had more important things to focus on under the 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP).
Speaking after opening the Kompleks Mutiara Pernama at Camp Syed Sirajuddin here, yesterday, he said the Fulcrums would be replaced when the need arose. It was recently reported that the ministry was looking into replacing the MiG-29N fleet, which was purchased in 1995.
Five aircraft had been identified as leading contenders for the contract France's Dassault Aviation's Rafale; the United States' Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet; Europe's Eurofighter Typhoon; the Swedish JAS- 39 Gripen and the Russian Sukhoi Su-35 Flanker-E.
Zahid said the ministry would continue with the other planned purchases under the 10MP, including second-generation offshore patrol vessels for the Royal Malaysian Navy. Earlier, Zahid said the new Kompleks Mutiara Pernama offered those staying there the chance to purchase goods at cheaper prices.
"The chain of Pernama stores nationwide sells 370 products at cheaper prices through an annual RM5 million subsidy." The RM10 million, three-storey complex on a 0.65ha site has 22 business premises.