The Secretary General of the ministry, Datuk Abu Bakar Abdullah, in a statement said that the price offered by Eurocopter in the tender to replace the Nuri aircraft was through an international open tender which opened on November 7, 2007.
He said the decision to acquire the Eurocopter aircraft was based on the comprehensive bid made by the company and after it scored the highest marks covering the technical assessment and the offer of a reasonable offset price.
"Eurocopter also offered a proven system and fulfilled the military specifications. The Royal Airforce of Malaysia (TUDM) is responsible for being up to date with the latest information on current helicopter technology developments in the market which fulfill the needs of military operations.
"The assessment also took into account the suitability of use and the operations climate in
Bernama reports Abu Bakar said that after the open international tender was out, a briefing session was held on Dec 6, 2007, during the Langkawi International Marine and Aerospace (LIMA) exhibition and TUDM had provided the explanation on the technical and operational aspects expected of the potential aircraft to be purchased.
The representative from the Defence Industry Division meanwhile explained on the need for an offset package and this was in line with a letter issued by the Defence Ministry on Feb 4, 2005 on the Policy and Guideline on the Countertrade/Offset Programme. Among others, the programme stated that for any acquisition of defence equipment worth more than Euro 10 million or more, there should be an offer for countertrade/offset.
The open international tender was closed on February 12 this year and on the same date at 12 noon, the ministry's Committee for Opening and Scheduling of Tender (JMMT) had opened all the offer documents received, witnessed by the participating companies' representatives.
Abu Bakar said a total of seven offers were received with the bidding pricing including delivery charges. The pricing offered by Eurocopter (Code tender: T521/07/A/006) was Euro 233,345,390.
Other tenders included T521/07/A/001 with the price in Pound Sterling amounting to 341,888,123; T521/07/A/002 (RM663,189,500), T521/07/A/003 (Euro 104,632,729); T521/07/A/004 (US$220,496,700); T521/07/A/005 (US$708,305,497) and T521/07/A/007 (US$348,178,365).
"These documents were further divided into three groups and enlisted for assessment by the Technical Assessment Committee, Offset Evaluation Committee and Price Assessment Committee.
"The output of all the three committees were tabled at the Tender A Board Meeting on July 22, 2008 and subsequently its endorsement submitted to the Finance Ministry on August 4, 2008.
"On Sept 3, 2008, the Defence Ministry received the decision and approval from the Finance Ministry to choose Eurocopter's tender and the Ministry of Defence issued the Letter of Intention (LOI) to Eurocopter on Sept 15, 2008," Abu Bakar said.
The government earlier through a Cabinet meeting on July 18, 2007 had made the decision to acquire helicopters to replace the Nuri aircraft following wide complaints from the public on the performance of the Nuri.- 17/10/2008