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Bulgaria gets billion-dollar green light to buy Stryker armoured vehicles

5th September 2023 - 09:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team in London


The US Army is the largest operator of Stryker vehicles and the platform has been approved for sale to Bulgaria. (Photo: US Army)

The sale of 183 General Dynamics Land Systems Stryker armoured fighting vehicles to Bulgaria in a range of variants has been approved by the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) as a Foreign Military Sale in a deal worth $1.5 billion.

According to a statement from the DSCA ‘the proposed sale will improve Bulgaria’s rapid infantry deployment and force projection capability'.

The proposed sale consists of 90 XM1296 Infantry Carrier Vehicles (ICV) – Dragoon; 17 M1126 ICVs; nine M1132 engineer squad vehicles; 33 M1130 command vehicles; 24 M1133 medical evacuation vehicles; 10 M1135 NBCR vehicles; five heavy expanded mobility tactical truck (HEMTT) light equipment transporters; five modular catastrophic recovery systems; two M1120A4 HEMTT load handling systems; and five M984A4 Wrecker HEMTTs.

Aside from vehicles the contract includes a range of ancillary equipment including 107 M240 coaxial 7.62mm machine guns, M153A4 Common Remote Operated Weapons Stations, M2A1 .50cal machine guns, M6 smoke grenade launchers and associated spares, Harris radios, RS6 (LW30) remote weapon systems and TACFLIR 280-HDEP optical sensors.

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The principal contractor will be General Dynamics Land Systems and this proposed sale will require 20 Stryker contractor representatives to travel to Bulgaria for two years to conduct contractor logistics support, training, and component assembly support.

According to Shephard Defence Insight Bulgaria would be the third customer behind the US and Thailand but several other countries have received FMS approval such as Argentina, Peru and North Macedonia; however is not clear if they have been contracted or vehicles delivered. In January 2023 the US said it would donate Stryker vehicles to Ukraine and there have been sightings of these in the field.

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