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12 New Helicopters For Malaysia Navy (26 May 2003)

The Royal Malaysian Navy will be spending more than RM 850 million (S$ 386 million) on 12 new helicopters. The 12 new copters consist of six Super Lynx from Britain and six Fennec from France and will complement the navy's existing fleet of Alouette III helicopters.

The Super Lynx is worth RM 678 million (S$308 million) and will arrive in August. The RM 172 (S$78 million) Fennec will be expected to arrive in the middle of next year.

The new helicopters will be replacing the six WASP HAS MK1 helicopters that were decommissioned by the navy in December 2001.

The new fleet will strengthen the navy's aviation capabilities, as the navy will be able to apply the helicopters' radar system to optimise the use of their weapons systems.

It is learnt that the Fennec helicopter, which is capable of carrying four people, will be used for training purposes while the Super Lynx multi-role helicopter will have anti-ship weapons capabilities and able to ferry six personnel for maritime operations. The Fennec also has added advantages as it has twin engines and other special capabilities for sea operations.