The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) has shortlisted India’s LCA-Tejas Mk1A along with Sino-Pakistani developed JF-17, Chinese L-15 LIFT Jets with South Korean FA-50 jets to meet its requirements of LCA/LIFT jets under the tender for 18 light combat aircraft (LCA) as per internal leaked picture of the RMAF.
Malaysian Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) have delayed making an announcement of the winner of the tender till year-end, while recent Indian media reports indicate that state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has offered upgraded Tejas Mk1A with Indian made AESA Fire control Radar and is leading the race due to its dual pack support offer that also will cover existing RMAF’s Su-30MKM fleet that is based on baseline Indian Su-30MKI by Russia.
While JF-17 is also seen on the leaked poster of the RMAF, Prominent Pakistani defense analysts after seeing that JF-17 is not among the top two are now claiming that JF-17 has withdrawn from the tender due to delays in declaring the winner by RMAF. South Korean media outlets of late many times have declared themselves the winner but the final decision is yet to be taken by the MINDEF.
RMAF had received proposals from six different companies and a separate offer from the Turkish company for its proposed Advanced Jet Trainer and Light Attack Aircraft Hurjet that is yet to make its first flight. RMAF also has received offers from Russia for its Mig-35 and from Italian Aermacchi M-346, advanced jet trainers, and light combat aircraft but it seems both are out of shortlisted candidates.