Romania has a long shopping list. F-35 fighter jets, self-propelled howitzers or kamikaze drones. Other major programs are underway

S.I. Catalin |
Data publicării:
Aeronavă F-35 la Baza Aeriană Skrydstrup din Danemarca / Foto: Armata daneză
Aeronavă F-35 la Baza Aeriană Skrydstrup din Danemarca / Foto: Armata daneză

Romania remains committed to the process of developing the defence capabilities needed to fulfil the missions entrusted to it. At present, the Directorate-General for Armaments is active, at various stages, in more than 60 armament programs for all categories of forces.

According to officials from the National Ministry of Defence (MApN), following a meeting with several journalists, 15 military equipment programs are in preparation from 2024.

There are 15 procurement and processing programs underway, which are at various stages, depending on the specifics of each program and associated operational requirements, as follows:

I. F-35 5th generation multirole aircraft: the program foresees the procurement of 32 F-35 aircraft. In 2023, Letters of Offer and Acceptance (LOA) Letters of Request/Letters of Request for Intergovernmental Agreements (LOAs) has been submitted to the US Government.

DefenseRomania recently reported that the MoD must move quickly to stay on track for F-35 delivery. Our country wants to receive its first 5th generation aircraft in the early 2030s.

In early August 2023, the MoD sent Romania's request to the Parliament for approval for the initial-stage procurement of 32 F-35 5th generation multi-role fighter jets.

The estimated cost of the programme is $6.5 billion, excluding VAT. At the time, Defence Minister Angel Tîlvăr said that "the first step is being taken to equip the Romanian Air Force with a state-of-the-art capability that will give Romania a strengthened status in the security architecture on the Eastern Flank and in the Black Sea region".

II. Howitzer system cal. 155 mm Battalion level: program provisions: total program 5 systems Howitzer cal. 155 mm battalion level howitzer systems, of which 3 cal. 155 mm battalion level Obusers program estimate: 2 bn. USD 2 bn, according to Parliament's Preliminary Approval, of which USD 1.15 bn for Phase I procurement procedure in progress.

Last year, the Ministry of National Defence launched a programme for the procurement of self-propelled howitzers. The procurement is officially called "155 mm howitzer system".

Recently, defence industry sources told DefenseRomania that phase II of the tender, the submission of bids, ended on January 11.

So the bids have been submitted. One of the bids is that of Hanwha Aerospace, which went ahead with the offer of K9 Thunder self-propelled howitzers and most likely automatic and tracked K10 Ammunition Resupply Vehicle (ARV) variant, and of course the related ammunition.

Hanwha is thus in pole position to equip the Romanian Army with 155 mm self-propelled K9 Thunder tracked howitzers.


Other military equipment on the MApN's procurement list, starting in 2024

2. Obuzier po... (k9-thunder_09225800.png)

III. Mini UAS Class I system: Phase I program provisions: 22 Mini UAS Class I systems - fixed wing - procurement procedure in progress. Previously, MApN signed the contract with Israeli giant Elbit Systems for the supply of Watchkeeper X drones.

The Ministry of National Defence, through C.N. Romtehnica S.A., and Elbit Systems Ltd. of Israel signed in December 2022, the framework agreement for the supply of the product "Tactical-operational UAS System Class II".

Also, in April 2023, Romania and Turkey signed the G2G (Government to Government) direct award contract for the procurement of Turkish Bayraktar TB2 UAVs.  This makes Romania the second EU country to purchase such drones after Poland.

C4I systems with ISTAR integration capabilities: programme provisions: 82 systems purchase value of systems phase I: 846,000,000 lei specific procurement procedure for 17 systems under way, with the essential security interest invoked.

C-UAS electronic warfare system: programme value 557,000,000 lei competitive procurement procedure under way.

ATBTU armoured tactical vehicles: programme provisions phase I: 1059 vehicles programme value 3.688.300.000lei procurement procedure ongoing.

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