Russia has offered airplanes to Malaysia during a bilateral meeting between Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Russian President Vladimir Putin Tuesday.
“He (Putin) raised a possibility of selling their airplanes to us. That depends on how much money that we have,” Mahathir was quoted as saying by Malaymail Wednesday.
Dr Mahathir is in Singapore for the 33th Asean Summit and its related Meetings. However, Dr Mahathir did not disclose whether the offer was for military or commercial purposes.
Asked whether Russia would help maintain the aircraft bought from Moscow, Dr Mahathir said: “He will help us. We have a fleet of Sukhoi... some of them (are) not flying.”
During the bilateral meeting with Russia, Dr Mahathir said that Malaysia needed “to learn more how to maintain and repair the aircraft.”
Malaysia’s Ministry of Defence has been operating Sukhoi Su-30MKM and MiG-29 fighter jets. It has been reported that there were issues with regard to their maintenance and service.
Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu had said only four of the 18 Sukhoi jets were able to fly well, while the rest were under repair.