Estonia, Latvia and Finland hoping to reach defense cooperation in 4 years ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Armored vehicles.
Armored vehicles. Source: Kermo Pastarus

Estonia, Latvia and Finland signed a joint technical agreement on the development of armored vehicles aimed at joint procurement, which could lead to comprehensive defense cooperation between the three countries in four years' time. Finland and Estonia are already acquiring artillery cannons from Korea.

The Pasi armored vehicles manufactured in Finland are currently in use by the Defense Forces. New armored vehicles are planned to be included in the forthcoming Defense Forces Development Plan until 2026. The current ones are about to expire and about a hundred new machines will be needed in a decade, ETV current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" mediated. 

 "We are talking about five to six separate platforms. One is the most common armor conveyor with a weapon, communication and which task is carrying a  unite size division.  In addition, there are communication control armor, medical armor, logistics armor, pioneer armor," Kusti Salm, director of the National Defense Investment Center explained.

 The Patria plant in Finland is promoting a three-axle or 6x6 armored prototype developed a few years ago. Whether this will result in a new Finnish-Baltic joint armor will be determined after the procurement. Pasi seems like a logical choice because it is a familiar machine.

"If the next armor was Patria in the same way, it would also affect the retraining of units already trained in the reserve to the new armor," Lieutenant Colonel Arno Kruusmann, the infantry inspector said.

Both Finland and Estonia buy artillery cannons from Korea. Finland and Estonia need fire control support machines. Here, too, is the reason to work together shoulder to shoulder.

"Artillery is armored. With armored vehicles, we provide the necessary support, for example, for control artillery or fire-fighting teams," Kruusmann explained.

Passports are used by UN peacekeeping missions. The Estonian Defense Forces use them in foreign missions, where the armored vehicle performs the task of a combat machine.

"Both Afghanistan and Iraq were dominated by self-made explosive devices, which at times were very powerful. This made it a requirement to add more armor to the machines," Salm said.

So far, Estonia has purchased air surveillance radars with Finland and ammunition with Latvia.

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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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