India’s State-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is participating in the Defence Services Asia (DSA) Exhibition & Conference held from March 28-31 at Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC) in Kuala Lumpur, where the company is seen promoting LCA-Lead-in fighter training (LIFT) to met Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) tender for the 18 Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) procurement.

According to Malaysian Media, RMAF has shortlisted four bids and likely Russian bid for Mig-35 has been rejected because RMAF recently retired its Russian-made MiG-29 Fulcrum because of the high cost of maintenance and chances are that the JF-17 Thunder fighter jet bid by Sino-Pakistan joint-venture also is rejected since both Mig-29 and JF-17 are equipped with Russian engines and also due to ongoing sanctions on Russian enterprises.

Malaysian media reports indicate that the RMAF is likely to formalize and sign procurement contracts with the winning vendor at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) 2023 that will be held in March next year but the winning bid might be announced later in the year. RMAF initially had announced that the winning bid will be announced on the sidelines of the DSA Exhibition & Conference.

Turkey Aerospace Industries is offering its LCA known as Hürjet, and India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, with its Tejas fighter, are seen as front runners while RMAF also has got bids from Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) for the FA-50 jet fighter and Italy’s Leonardo, with its M-346 planes.

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