Estonia set to acquire new sniper rifles from Finnish company
The Estonian Centre for Defense Investments (ECDI) has signed a contract with Finnish company Sako for the procurement of new 8.6 mm sniper rifles. The rifles, which will be used by the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) and Defense League (Kaitseliit) are more accurate and stable than those used previously. The total value of the agreement will be €40 million over the next seven years.
"The Sako TRG M10 is well-known and widely used around the world, including in our neighboring countries. For example, Sweden recently announced the purchase of a similar configuration, in addition to Sako's other weapons. Therefore, this is a mature and experienced system in active production," said Ramil Lipp, armament category manager of the Estonian Center for Defense Investments (ECDI).
Previously, the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) have used TRG 42 8.6 mm sniper rifles purchased from the same manufacturer.
According to an ECDI press release, the new rifles are an improvement on the previous model, due to being more ergonomic, stable and accurate.
The TRG M10 is, for instance, equipped with a suppressor and optical and thermal sights, enabling it to operate effectively in various weather and lighting conditions. The new rifle also has a modular design, giving the user increased flexibility when assembling the weapon system.
Major Risto Pärtel, the EDF's chief armorer, said that the task of snipers is to eliminate high-value targets while remaining unnoticed. "The new rifles allow all of this to be done around the clock. They are equipped with top-of-the-line accessories such as suppressors and thermal sights. In addition to high accuracy, the rifles also have to be durable and as compact and lightweight as possible."
The weapon system enables long-range shots at a distance of up to 15,00 meters.
"Our great thanks for the Estonian Center for Defense Investments for the trust we have received. We are honored that the ECDI has selected our rifle to meet the end users' exacting requirements. It is important to Sako that our products are widely appreciated among professionals around the world and this framework agreement proves it once again," said Juha Alhonoja, general manager of Sako Ltd.
The first order will be for approximately 70 rifles. The new rifles will be provided to both the 1st and 2nd Infantry Brigades of the Estonian Defense Forces and the Estonian Defense League.
The expected delivery time for the new sniper rifles is 2024.
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Editor: Michael Cole