Estonia tests competing sniper rifles ahead of tender award
The Estonian Centre for Defence Investment (ECDI) has announced a tender for procurement of sniper weapons for the Estonian Defence Forces and the Defence League, with test firings carried out on 7 March to assess the technical suitability of the weapons.
The test firing will determine accuracy and reliability of the weapon, optical sight and other accessories.
The weapons being tested are from Sako, Haenel, Unique Alpine and Desert Tech and include accessories selected by the tenderers and fitted on the weapons.
Each bidder has assembled a proposed system with freely selected accessories and equipment in compliance with the requirements of the ECDI.
Major Risto Pärtel, chief weapons officer of the Estonian Defence Forces, said: 'Using the new rifles, it [sniper missions] can be done at any time of the day, as the weapons are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment like silencers and thermal weapon sights. In addition to high accuracy, the weapons must also be robust and as compact and light as possible.'
The selected rifle will replace the current Sako TRG-42 in service and must be accurate over distances of up to 1,500m.
Evaluation criteria include cost of the rifle and accessories, weight and length, barrel life and the cost of spare parts.
Once test firings are complete and results have been evaluated, a contract will be awarded to the successful company in Q2 2023. The expected delivery date for the new sniper weapons is 2024.
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