07 November 2012

France and Norway Offer Military Equipment to Malaysia

07 November 2012

Malaysia plans to complete the Kedah class corvette with Naval Strike Missile SSM with range 185km from Kongsberg Norway (image : KDA)

France, Norway offer to sell arms

FRANCE and Norway yesterday offered to supply Malaysia with military equipment as a means of enhancing trade relations.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said French President Francois Hollande raised the issue of supplying Rafale jet-fighters and combat helicopters for the Royal Malaysian Air Force's multirole combat aircraft programme during their discussion.

He said France was also keen to sell more Airbus passenger aircraft to Malaysia.

"France sees Malaysia as an important country for economic cooperation," he told Malaysian journalists after one-on-one meetings with the leaders of the two European countries here.

Their discussions were held on the sidelines of the Ninth Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem) Summit at the National Convention Centre here in Laos.

Najib discussed trade issues with Hollande and Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg after holding bilateral talks with Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf earlier in the day.

Najib also said following his discussion with Hollande, Air France would start to fly to Kuala Lumpur International Airport in April.

As for Norway, Najib said Stoltenberg had highlighted missiles which could be used by the Royal Malaysian Navy ships.

He said Norway also wished to provide Malaysia with the latest technology in oil and gas drilling.

"The technology is said to be able to double oil extraction rates," he said, adding that Norway had developed sub-sea oil extraction by using robotic technology without the need to build oil platforms.

On Asem, Najib said he told the delegates that Asia should learn from the failures and successes of Europe.

Earlier, Najib opened the first Maybank branch here before witnessing the signing ceremony of a concession agreement between the Laos government and Malaysian company Giant Consolidated Ltd to build a 220km rail line in Laos.

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