According to an RMN statement, the next phase will be Port Acceptance Test Phase. However, following the worldwide outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic epidemic, the official naming ceremony of this Third LMS was postponed and will be held simultaneously with the ship’s official delivery ceremony scheduled for November 2021.
This final LMS will join the 11th LMS Squadron with KD Keris (First LMS), Sundang (Second LMS), and the yet-to-be-named third LMS. Keris was launched in April 2019 and commissioned in December 2019 while the third LMS was launched in October 2020. Procurement of these LMS vessels is implemented under the Contract of the Ministry of Defense Malaysia with Boustead Naval Shipyard Sdn Bhd which was signed on 23 March 2017 in collaboration with China Shipbuilding & Offshore International Co. Ltd. (CSOC), China.
LMS is one of the five (5) class of ships in the 15to5 Fleet Transformation Program. LMS is capable of performing patrol duties, maritime surveillance, Search and Rescue (SAR) as well as enforcing Malaysian maritime law.
Royal Malaysian Navy statement
This final LMS will undergo a series of Harbor Acceptance Tests and then Sea Acceptance Tests before being handed over to the RMN in November 2021. The second vessel, Sundang was launched in July 2019 and was set to be delivered in April this year but this has been delayed because of the pandemic.
About Malaysia’s LMS
For the record, the acquisition contract of the LMS was signed on 23 March 2017 between the Malaysian Ministry of Defense and Boustead in collaboration with CSOC, China. LMS is one of the five classes of ships in the 15to5 Fleet Transformation Program. LMS construction is characterized by “fit for purpose”. This coastal patrol ship is a modular concept that is capable of being configured for specific missions depending on the needs.
All four LMS units will join the RMN Eastern Fleet where they will reinforce the readiness and sovereignty of eastern Malaysia’s maritime waters. The LMS will also address the problem of asset obsolescence as well as maintenance schedule cycles existing RMN ships.
The acquisition of the LMS is through cooperation with China, a first in the history of the Royal Malaysian Navy. Through this acquisition, Malaysia can strengthen diplomatic relations with China in defense and economy.
According to Janes, LMS type vessels have issues with their combat system, the RMN having compiled a list of deficiencies that were observed while operating the first in-class-ship.
Length overall: 68.00 meters
Beam: 9.20 meters
Crew: 45 (+16)
Max speed: 22 knots
Range: 2,000 nautical miles at 16 knots
Endurance: Up to 15 days at sea
Operation: Up to sea state 5