At MAST Asia 2019, the defense exhibition and conference currently held near Tokyo, Japan, local shipbuilder Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding (Mitsui E&S) unveiled its MRSS design that could compete for a Royal Malaysian Navy requirement.
The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) « 15 to 5 » transformation program involves the acquisition of three Multirole Support Ship (MRSS) ships, with a planned delivery between 2021-2025 for the first two vessels and around 2035 for the third one.
Regarding the MRSS, the Chief of the RMN Admiral Reza told Naval News during LIMA 2019 that he is « still negotiating with the government to make sure it becomes a reality in the near future ».
Talking to Naval News at MAST Asia 2019, a Mitsui E&S naval architect explained that Mitsui’s MRSS design has a transportation capacity of 500 troops, 16 main battle tanks, 6 armored vehicles, 1 ambulance vehicle. The helicopter hangar has room for two medium helicopters plus several UAVs. The well deck can accommodate two landing craft (LCM type).
Mitsui’s MRSS can launch and recover two medium size helicopters simultaneously, EC725 type of the RMAF. The vessel has a length of 160 meters and a breadth of 24 meters for a displacement of 13,000 tons. The crew complement is 150 people.
The main missions of these vessels will be:
- Troop transport
- Amphibious suppport
- Command and Control (C2)
- Logistics support
- Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief
According to Mistui, this design leverages technical aspects and design features fostered by the previous construction of LPD Osumi and Shimokita of the JMSDF.
According to information gathered since LIMA 2019, there are now at least six shipyards currently shaping their offer with a view to a potential RFP. Besides Japan’s Mitsui, other competitors include the Nertherlands’ Damen, France’s Naval Group, China’s CSOC shipyard, Indonesia’s PT PAL and a South Korean shipyard.