The naming and delivery ceremony of Littoral Mission Ship KD Rencong (114) took place today at the Wuchang Shipbuilding Industrial Group, in Wuhan, China. KD Rencong is the fourth ship of Keris-class littoral mission ship. The Keris-class are a class of patrol vessels of the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN, Tentera Laut Diraja Malaysia) by China Shipbuilding and Offshore International Co. Ltd at Wuchang Port, Qidong, Shanghai in China. Rencong will joined her sister ships in the Skuadron 11 LMS at their base at the Kota Kinabalu Naval base in Teluk Sepanggar, Sabah. The other three ships are KD Keris, KD Sundang and KD Badik. Keris was commissioned into service on January 17, 2020; Sundang on March 5, 2021, and Badik on October 22.
The ships were built by Malaysia and China companies under the joint development agreement. Malaysia and China agreed to jointly develop a Littoral Mission Ship and, two ships will be built in China by China Shipbuilding and Offshore International Co. Ltd, the rest will be built in Malaysia by local company Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation (BHIC). The first ship was to be delivered to the Royal Malaysian Navy by 2019, the second and third by 2020, and the fourth by 2021. LMS is one of the five (5) class of ships in the 15to5 Fleet Transformation Program. LMS is capable of performing patrol duties, maritime surveillance, Search and Rescue (SAR) as well as enforcing Malaysian maritime law.
The Keris class are a class of large patrol vessels (Littoral Mission Ship) of the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) with a length of 69 meters (226 ft 5 in) and displacing 700 tons. The ships are enlarged and improved versions of Durjoy-class large patrol craft of the Bangladesh Navy but armed with only guns as per the requirement of the Royal Malaysian Navy. This coastal patrol ship is a modular concept that is capable of being configured for specific missions depending on the needs. The ships can carry up to three standard ISO containers. The ships will support missions including anti-surface warfare, mine warfare, hydrography and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) duties.
After the government changed in the 2018 Malaysian general election, the Littoral Mission Ship acquisition program was revised in early 2019 to reduce the procurement costs and shorten the delivery process. In September 2020, Malaysia planned that the next batch of the ship will be the new design from another company. It includes a 68 m offshore patrol vessel concept from Netherland shipbuilder Damen known as the Damen Stan Patrol Vessel 6811, a 70.7 m offshore patrol vessel from US shipbuilder Swiftships, a 70.2 m offshore patrol vessel from German shipbuilder Fassmer and a 70 m offshore patrol vessel from local company Preston. While the joint venture between Malaysian company, Destini, and Netherlands-based shipbuilder, Damen, offered a proposal that similar to the ship ordered by Malaysia Coast Guard which is an 83 m Damen 1800 OPV.