Singapore’s Steps: Long-Range Aster-30 Defensive Missiles on Land & Sea
Singapore’s Minister for Defence Dr. Ng Eng Hen has confirmed that they’ve picked MBDA’s SAMP/T Aster-30 missile system as their upper-tier air defense system on land. Singapore already uses the missiles at sea, aboard its Formidable Class frigates, so the land-based buy will draw on an existing support network. It isn’t entirely clear whether or not a contract has been signed, which isn’t unusual for Singapore.
MBDA’s Aster-30s will replace Raytheon’s MIM-23 I-Hawk missiles as Singapore’s upper tier air defense on land, offering Singapore the ability to intercept short range ballistic missiles as well as aircraft, cruise missiles, etc. It’s the latest step in a series of interlocking improvements. One tier down, SAMP/T will be complemented by new RAFAEL Spyder mobile air defense systems, whose short to medium range coverage will supplement older Rapier missile systems from Britain. In the air, Singapore’s new IAI Gulfstream G550 CAEW jets offer Singapore greater endurance and warning distance than the RSAF’s retired E-2C Hawkeyes, and can coordinate responses from ground systems and RSAF fighters. Sources: Singapore MINDEF, “Reply by Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen to Parliamentary Question on Relocation of Paya Lebar Air Base”.