LANGKAWI: Airbus says it is in the midst of preparing its response to a request for information (RFI) from the Malaysian government for the C295 maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) early this year.
RFI is a standard business process whose purpose is to collect written information about the capabilities of various suppliers.
South East Asia and Pacific head of sales Fabrice Rochereau said the RFI shows the government’s intention of strengthening the country’s surveillance and security capability.
“Recent comments by senior officials indicate that maritime patrol aircraft are now a priority due to Malaysia’s strategic environment as a maritime nation and a need to beef up the country’s surveillance and security capability and have better situation awareness,” he said.
He was speaking to to reporters at a briefing in conjunction with the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace 2019 (LIMA’19) exhibition which began yesterday and ends on March 30 at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre (MIEC) and Resorts World Langkawi (RWL).
He said the C295 MPA represents the best combination of value and capability for Malaysia and offers the lowest risk given that it is not a concept aircraft that is not unproven in service.
“It also has the best acquisition, operating and life cycle costs in its category,” he said.
He said the aircraft features a modern mission system and a comprehensive sensor suite which was developed in-house, presenting a lower risk as compared to aircraft that incorporate crucial third-party systems.
“Maintenance costs are three times lower than other comparable platforms and it is also six times more fuel-efficient than jet aircraft,” he said.
He added that the C295 MPA is being used in Brazil, Chile, Oman and Portugal while Canada has also ordered the aircraft. – Bernama