The Malaysian Ministry of Defense (MINDEF) is in the process of acquiring six Coastal Surveillance System (CSS) radar systems for the Eastern Coast of Sabah to address the existing gaps caused by the malfunction of previous radar systems. The Coastal Surveillance System (CSS) radar systems installed in 2016 were the Hensoldt (then Airbus Defence and Space) Spexer 2000 Coastal AESA ground surveillance radars of which five were purchased. Airbus sold its sensor division to Hensoldt in 2018. According to the 2018 budget these radars cost some RM50 million.
The CSS comes under Joint Force Headquarters 2 (ATB 2) as with other military operations in ESSCOM. On June 18, 2022, the Defence Ministry issued a tender to dismantle, pack, transport and store all the five AESA SPEXER 2000 radars and all of its associated equipment at a site to be determined by the ATB 2. The radars have suffered irreparable damage and are not cost-effective to repair. Consequently, all five AESA SPEXER 2000 radar systems have been decommissioned.
The Minister of Defense, Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan has identified the necessity of addressing the gaps in the Eastern Coast of Sabah by acquiring six CSS radar systems, including five replacements and one new addition. An allocation of RM57 million has been earmarked for acquiring six Coastal Surveillance System (CSS). The total allocation for these six radar systems amounts to RM57 million and will be obtained under the 13th Malaysia Plan (RMK13).
Coastal Surveillance Systems (CSS) is a network of 13 radar coastal surveillance systems is being installed from Pulau Banggi to Tawau, with 8 already in operation. This network is controlled from the Armed Forces’ joint base in Tawau. The Malaysian Government has embarked on a programme to significantly upgrade the land, sea and air defence capabilities of the Malaysian Armed Forces in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZONE). ESSZONE is a security zone in the Malaysian state of Sabah following persistent attacks by pirates and militants from the southern Philippines.