European production of artillery shells also to increase in the coming years - Spruds

  • 2024-03-22
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - The production of artillery shells in Europe will be increased in the coming years as well, Minister of Defense Andris Spruds (Progressives) said in an interview with Latvian Radio.

Commenting on the situation in Ukraine and the insufficient supply of ammunition to Ukraine, Spruds said that ammunition shipments were being delivered to Ukraine continuously, but that much more ammunition is needed. "That is why some initiatives are being taken to supply more. Partners are also being sought outside the European Union," the Minister explained.

Europe has already increased its artillery production capacity. Similarly, the production of artillery shells in Europe will be increased in the coming years.

"Deliveries are taking place, but at a slower pace. Latvia also recently supplied Ukraine with shells," said Spruds, pointing out that it is not just about shells for Ukraine, it is also about artillery systems.

The situation is also complicated by the fact that Ukraine uses different artillery systems, which require different artillery shells.

Spruds also reminded that work is continuing to produce artillery shells in Latvia.

As reported, the European Commission last week decided to allocate EUR 513 million for the development of the European Union's (EU) defense industry, the Latvian Defense Ministry informed.

The funding has been granted under the Act in Support of Ammunition Production (ASAP), supporting a total of 31 of the submitted projects.

According to the Defense Ministry, the total budget of industry's co-funding will exceed EUR 1.5 billion, and the production of artillery shells will be significantly increased across Europe to two million shells per year by the end of 2025.

Latvian company Valsts Aizsardzibas Korporacija is also among the recipients of the EU funding, the minister noted.

Valsts Aizsardzibas Korporacija submitted its project for EU funding as part of an international consortium along with companies of KNDS Group in France and Italy and companies of NAMMO Group in Norway and Finland at the end of 2023. The project aims to implement a number of activities in various countries, including to set up a production facility in Latvia for the production of modular projectiles.

In total, the Commission has approved EUR 41.38 million for the consortium project. The grant agreements are expected to be signed in May this year.

The Defense Ministry explains that the munitions support regulation aims to accelerate and increase the production of munitions across Europe.