Czech Republic urgently calls for a military facelift

Czech Republic to spend over $50 million on armoured vehicles

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The Czech Defence Ministry has announced its plans for the purchase of dozens of armoured vehicles, ammunition, radar systems and servicing for helicopters and the L-410 and the Airbus A-319 aircraft this year, according to the government report discussions will resume on Wednesday.

Spokesman for the Ministry of defence Petr Medek has announced, “11 tenders will be launched in 2015, but the contracts would be paid in the next several years.”

The government has made it clear that it wants to add at least 20 armoured vehicles by 2020 costing over $50 million to its artillery and the tender to launch by the end of this summer.

The Czech military currently possesses impressive military equipment with access to 107 Pandur armoured vehicles worth close to $620 million. By the end of the year the military plans to tender a further 42 armoured vehicles.

Their expected date of payment for the tenders is estimated to be between 2019 and 2023. Furthermore the government plans to put aside a fraction of the budget to acquire 3D radio locators worth $140 million that would essentially replace the outdated old Soviet made systems.

Czech Republic initially planned to buy a radar system via the cooperation of the militaries of Hungary, Poland and Slovakia but this agreement halted.

Last year the Ministry of Defence had intended to tender multiple airport radar systems but this investment failed due to the lack of bidders.

A new tender will be launched soon, earlier this year the Czech military signed a contract for pilot training worth $50 million. Discussions around the purchase of helicopters was considered but did not make the final list of military tenders submitted to the government.

There are however motivating reasons in Europe for higher defence spending. Last year’s annexation of Crimea by Russia in particular spurred an 8.4 percent increase in military expenditure in Eastern Europe, with a grand total of $93.9 billion being spent.

A recent report on global defence spending in 2014 by leading Swedish think-tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) noted spending in the region had increased 98 percent since 2005.

Meanwhile, Russia is planning to increase its defence budget by 15 percent in 2015, with a 60 percent increase planned for the purchase of arms, including Su-34 long-range combat aircraft as well as Verba and S-400 surface-to-air missile systems further alarming Western countries like the Czech Republic, thus pushing them to increase their military budget.

TRTWorld and agencies