Czech Republic to receive Leopard 2 tanks from Germany

Czech Republic to receive Leopard 2 tanks from Germany
Author: photo: Bundeswehr-Fotos; CC BY 2.0
19 / 05 / 2022, 10:00

On Wednesday 18 May, Defence Minister Jana Černochová informed the Czech Government that she and German Defence Minister Christine Lambert had agreed on the donation of 15 Leopard 2A4 tanks. The two sides will also start negotiations on the possibility of acquiring up to 50 tanks of the most modern version 2A7+ for the Czech Army in the coming years.

"Germany has long been our key economic partner. However, this has not been the case for a long time in the field of defence and we want to change this, not only in the field of tank troops, but in bilateral cooperation in general. I believe that this will make our army stronger and our country safer," said Minister Černochová.

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Later this year, the German side is expected to make a donation in recognition of how intensively the Czech Republic has supported Ukraine with donations of military equipment since the beginning of the Russian invasion. The basis of this donation will be 15 Leopard 2A4 tanks, 14 of which will be combat tanks and one recovery tank. The delivery, which will be provided by the German defence industry, will also include spare parts and ammunition.

In order for the donation to be implemented, a contract needs to be concluded, which is already in the works. The assumption is that the signing will be possible during the summer. The first Leopard 2A4 tank will be delivered within six months of the signing at the latest, with the others to follow shortly thereafter. In addition, the MoD envisages that the donated tanks will be upgraded to the 2A7+ version in the future.

This year will also see the start of training of Czech soldiers in Germany, followed by more intensive combined training of Czech and German tankers on Czech territory. This approach will ensure a faster transition to the new platform and will support bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

At the same time, the Ministry of Defence will start negotiations for the procurement of additional Leopard tanks in the latest 2A7+ version. The aim is to procure up to 50 units in various modifications in the coming years.

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"Leopard tanks are in the arsenal of many NATO allies as well as our close neighbours, such as Hungary and Poland. This rearmament will also contribute to the creation of a heavy brigade in line with our alliance commitments," the Defence Minister explained.

The purchase of the new tanks and the upgrades will be carried out in cooperation with the German Government, whose army plans to purchase and upgrade its own Leopard 2 tanks. At the same time, this is an opportunity to ensure maximum involvement of the Czech defence industry, not only in the supply and modernisation of the Czech army, but also in the much larger supply to the German army.

Author: Jakub Fajnor

Source: Ministry of Defence

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