Vehicles deal worth €693 million largest defense procurement to date

Existing EDF vehicles en route to Poland late last year, to assist in that country's surveillance of its border with Belarus.
Existing EDF vehicles en route to Poland late last year, to assist in that country's surveillance of its border with Belarus. Source: ERR

The Center for Defense Investment (RKK) has announced a €693-million long-term military vehicles and plant procurement, the largest military procurement made by Estonia to date.

The vehicles will be mostly logistical in nature, including cranes, loaders and aircraft loaders.

Toomas Kalda, RKK sector manager, said Monday that: "This procurement will give defense planners greater opportunities to plug our current capacity gaps and, if necessary, to quickly procure those vehicles which are currently lacking."

The procurement is a joint one with Latvia's defense ministry, covering a 10-year period and involving not only the military – the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) and Defense League (Kaitseliit), but also the civilian Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) authority.

"The procurement will see a total of 16 different types of vehicles purchased, at significant volumes across the two countries. We will get the opportunity to replace a fleet of vehicles which has become obsolete as of today. This replacement will take place on the basis of both new vehicles as well as used vehicles purchased from the allies," Kalda went on.

The Public Procurement Register (Riigihangete register) put the value of the tender at €693 million as published on its website on Monday.

Maj. Herko Sepp, head of the EDF's defense equipment and weapons systems department, said that: "Given that most EDF vehicles will reach the end of their service life during the next decade, the success of this procurement is crucial."

"Under the terms of the agreement, the EDF will be able to equip virtually all its vehicles with virtually all the necessary things within the relevant scope, together with repair and maintenance support, and ensure the sustainability of the EDF's combat capabilities in the category of wheeled vehicles for decades to come."

The procurement is divided into two phases – vehicles below 5 tonnes being purchased in the first stage and heavier vehicles, of 5 tonnes or more, to be procured in the second stage, and categorized on the basis of their logistical or tactical parameters, load capacity and superstructure (cranes, lifts, hooks etc.) where applicable.

A single tender is sought not only for the vehicles themselves, but also for their upkeep, maintenance and spare parts, ERR reports.

The procurement will also be based on the principle of using a single manufacturer, which should bring in economies of scale and simplified support chains in future, rather than using multiple manufacturers' products.

There is also leeway in the tender for more standard market versions and more specialized versions of the vehicles to be procured.

The vehicles can be procured for ten years by the EDF, the Defense League, the PPA and those agencies under Latvia's defense ministry's aegis.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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