This blog will be a repository of the postings of a military nature from my other blog and new ones since then, especially about the Malaysian Military in particular. Hopefully such knowledge about the hardworking men and women who tirelessly work for the security of Malaysia will be acknowledged and appreciated in this way.
"We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm."
- Winston Churchill
Friday, November 26, 2010
Worth A Pretty Penny
While checking up on a few facts on MRAP vehicles, I came across a couple of interesting facts on Singapore's purchase of their Navistar Maxxpro Dash MPTVs. It seems only 15 units was purchased in 2009 but at a total price of USD30,067,798.08 based on this US Department of Defence report, including spares.
"NAVISTAR IL M67854-09-C-1091 13,349,400.33 Singapore MAXXPRO DASH NAVISTAR IL M67854-09-C-1091 16,673,397.75 Singapore Spares and Support"
That makes a per unit cost of about USD2 million per MPTV, but you will not find any objection from the Singaporeans methinks. However for a similar Malaysian purchase, I would think the following dialogue would be put forward in our august chambers by some brightspark;
" I want to ask why was these lorries bought by our Army at a price of US 2 million dollars each, cannot buy some lori from (insert preffered country) at very cheap price ka? Who we want to go to war with with these super expensive lori, can dive one ma? We only need to carry soldiers, no need expensive-expensive one."
Well enough with the jokes, but the point is that looking at the Singaporean purchase it really strengthens my argument that we should be thinking of producing our own MRAPs, as they cost quite a pretty penny. The time will come when we will need these sort of vehicles in order to enhance protection of our servicemen against direct fire anti tank munitions and IEDs. Even as a niche unit in a BIS regiment as I expect that our armoured and mechanised regiments would be suffficiently protected, the volume should be sufficient enough for these sort of vehicles to be seriously considered for production. We cannot depend on soft-skin vehicles to forever provide logistics support without any protective role whatever. Our servicemen deserves all the investment required to protect them in order for them to carry out their duties in defending our country.
(Edited : For a good primer on MRAPs, please read the MRAP Vehicle article in the November 2010 issue of Asian Military Review)