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M'sia inks RM1.4 billion missile deals, wants subs

Malaysia today ordered British and Russian missile systems worth RM1.4 billion to boost its air power and agreed to buy its first ever submarines, but denied the shopping spree was aggressive.

The government, which has long harboured ambitions to establish a submarine fleet, agreed to order three French vessels in its maiden subs deal, official sources said. Jane's Defence Weekly has put the sub deal at about RM3.8 billion.

The defence ministry sealed a RM1.2 billion contract with European consortium MBDA to buy the JERNAS short-range missile system to form a new air defence regiment.

It also inked a RM182 million-deal with Russian state-owned company Rosoboronexport for the IGLA air defence system on the sidelines of a major Asian defence services exhibition here.

The two contracts came a day after the ministry signed three agreements worth RM304.65 million to buy assault rifles and equipment in the first round of a defence shopping spree.

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