The first Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) Scorpene submarine KD Tunku Abdul Rahman is to return to service in May, following the completion of an extensive in-country refit undertaken by Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation Berhad (BHIC). Sea trials are currently underway. RMN’s second submarine, KD Tun Razak, recently commenced its refit which is expected to be completed by 2020.
The refit for the Scorpene Class submarine is undertaken every eight years. and the completion of this task by BHIC in Malaysia is a commendable achievement, considering that these are the first ever Scorpene submarines to receive a refit outside France. Engineering and obsolescence management for the submarines is being undertaken by BHIC, though no major systems were upgraded over the course of the refit. The refit takes 18 months and work on both submarines was contracted to BHIC at 1.8 billion MYR. The two submarines were delivered in January and October 2009 respectively, following a 2002 order worth approximately 1 Billion Euro.
Under the terms of the original Scorpene submarine contract, BHIC was to complete the refit of both Scorpene submarines in Sepangar Naval Base and ensure that the submarines are safe to dive after the refit. In addition to this, BHIC provides the RMN with In-Service Support (ISS). The major aspect of the ISS package provided by BHIC is the Assisted Maintenance Period (AMP), Docking for Essential Defects (DED) and Continuous Corrective Maintenance during the operational period. Currently there are four customers for the Scorpene; India (6), Brazil (4), Malaysia (2) and Chile (2).