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Baltic republics team up to buy support vehicles

9th February 2022 - 10:20 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Volvo supplied the Estonian military with container trucks in 2020. (Photo: EDF/Ardi Hallismaa)

Estonia and Latvia are investing almost $800 million over a ten-year period in new logistics, cargo and engineering vehicles.

With most of the utility and logistics vehicles in service with the Estonian Defence Forces set to reach the end of their service life in 2028-2035, the Estonian Centre for Defence Investment (ECDI) and the Latvian MoD are cooperating on the joint procurement of new platforms for their respective militaries.

In a 7 February statement, ECDI estimated the cost of the two-phase public procurement at €693 million ($791.81 million) over a ten-year period.

‘We intend to find a partner who would supply the defence forces of both countries with vehicles of 16 different types over the next ten years,’ said Toomas Kalda, ECDI vehicle category manager. ‘This generational shift will include both used vehicles obtained from our nearest allies and completely new vehicles, depending on usage intensity and financial benefits.’

In the first phase of the programme, Estonia and Latvia intend to buy vehicles with a load capacity of less than 5,000kg, followed by the procurement of heavier-capacity vehicles in the second phase.

Additionally, the framework agreement will enable mobile cranes, recovery vehicles and special airfield machinery vehicles to be bought, as well as variants with add-on armour.

Latvia in 2020 completed the procurement of 120 Unimog cargo vehicles with a load capacity of 5,000-15,000kg, while Lithuania ordered 340 refurbished (ex-German military) Unimog U5000 trucks in 2015 for €70 million with deliveries from 2016 to 2020.

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