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Ukraine awaits Brazilian approval to purchase 450 Guarani armoured vehicles

23rd May 2023 - 16:00 GMT | by Flavia Camargos Pereira in Kansas City


Guarani is a 17-20t-class amphibious armoured vehicle family. (Photo: Brazilian Army)

Kyiv is primarily interested in the ambulance variant of the platform, with vehicles planned to be deployed by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine.

After sending an official request to procure 450 Guarani armoured vehicles, Ukraine is now awaiting Brazilian government approval. The proposal is being analysed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MRE).

Kyiv is interested in the ambulance variant of the platform, which is currently being developed by Iveco Defence Vehicles Brazil (IDV Brazil) in partnership with the Brazilian Army.

The vehicles are planned to be deployed by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine for transport of civilians and wounded soldiers from conflict zones. They would be fitted with a Brazilian-made C2 system.

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Speaking to Shephard, a spokesperson for the Brazilian MoD explained that the process should follow the guidelines stated in Decree 9607 of 2018, which established national policy for export and import of defence products.

‘The first step is to obtain authorisation for preliminary negotiation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,’ the official pointed out.

Approached by Shephard, the MRE was unable to provide comments on the Ukrainian request at the time of writing.

Decree 9607 states that, in the event of a negative statement from the MRE on preliminary negotiations, ‘the process will be terminated’.

The document also asserts that the MRE will assess the suitability of each export request from the point of view of Brazilian foreign relations. In this sense, there is no guarantee that Brazil will approve the sale.

In public speeches and interviews in April, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva claimed that both Russia and Ukraine were equally responsible for the conflict, and Kyiv should consider ceding the Crimean Peninsula to negotiate peace with Moscow.

Lula da Silva also said that US and European allies should stop supplying military equipment to Ukraine, arguing that they were prolonging the war. During the G7 summit, from 19 to 21 May, in Japan, he was accused of being soft on Russia over its invasion.

The Guarani family is based on a ballistic steel monocoque hull design. (Photo: Brazilian Army)

A spokesperson for Iveco Defence Vehicles Brazil told Shephard that ‘this project would be an important business both for IDV and for Brazil's defence industrial base’.

The Guarani programme involves 100 domestic suppliers, and most spare parts and components are manufactured in Brazil, in line with government policy to stimulate development of the national defence industry.

Shephard Defence Insight notes that Guarani is currently in service with the Brazilian and Lebanese armies. Ghana and the Philippines are also reported to have acquired the platform.

Argentina is another country interested in the system and signed a letter of intent with Brazil in January for the acquisition of 156 platforms.

Guarani is a 17-20t-class amphibious armoured vehicle family based on a ballistic steel monocoque hull design. Its driveline and engineering are intended to be simple and robust, with the aim of easing support and providing flexibility in deployment.

This platform is planned to offer manouevre performance and protection in addition to enabling operation in day and night conditions in various scenarios. It can transport 11 people, including the driver and a gunner, and is equipped with passive night vision equipment for driver, commander and gunner.

The Brazilian Army envisages procurement of Guarani variants in reconnaissance, troop transport, mortar carrier, engineering, rescue, command post, anti-aircraft artillery, firing station, ambulance, reconnaissance, anti-vehicle, radar and forward observation roles.

Currently, the service is working on the improvement of this platform under the Guarani 2.0 project and has conducted several studies to identify areas of the system that can be optimised.

The effort is intended to modernise the in-service fleet to enable vehicles to overcome current and future threats while lowering the maintenance footprint. The upgrades will also be added to platforms that the service will acquire in the next few years.

Flavia Camargos Pereira


Flavia Camargos Pereira

Flavia Camargos Pereira is a land reporter at Shephard Media. She joined the company in …

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