The Jakarta Post
The government's plan to purchase Kilo-class submarines from Russia has received support from the House of Representatives (DPR) Commission I overseeing defense and foreign affairs due to sufficient budget.
According to the commission's member Sukamta, the Indonesian Military (TNI) had proposed a budget of Rp 37 trillion (US$2.52 billion) and an additional budget allocation of Rp 14.5 trillion for the Navy (TNI AL), which was the largest compared to the budget allocation for the Army (TNI AD) and the Air Force (TNI AU).
"Indonesia is a maritime country, since around 70 percent of its territory is oceanic, so sea security must be prioritized," said Sukamta on Tuesday as quoted by Antara news agency.
Sukamta said the submarine was currently the most sophisticated of its kind.
"It's similar to the Sukhoi SU-35 aircraft, which the Air Force wanted to have," said Sukamta.
He then referred to the upcoming ASEAN Economic Society (EMA) that would be faced by Indonesia as well as the potential for conflict in the South China Sea.
"[Increasingly] our maritime defense and security is becoming a priority," said Sukamta.
He also called on the government to plan carefully prior to the purchase, including ensuring the submarine's size was suitable for the archipelago's marine areas, the ease of maintenance and the ease of access to spare parts.
"We don't want to buy weaponry that is not suitable for our sea defense needs," said Sukamta. (edn/kes)(++++)
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