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NATO Support and Procurement Agency Awards Large-scale Multinational Contract for 155mm Ammunition

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NATO Support and Procurement Agency Awards Large-scale Multinational Contract for 155mm Ammunition

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French Army CAESAR 6x6 Mark I 155mm Self-propelled Howitzer
Nexter CAESAR 6x6 Mark I 155mm Self-propelled Howitzer

The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) has awarded a large-scale contract to KNDS France on behalf of two Ammunition Support Partnership (ASP) member Nations for the provision of 155mm ammunition. 155mm ammunition ensures long range defence capabilities, stands out for its versatility and effectiveness, offering precision and suppressive firepower up to >40 km range. The contract, in the triple-digit million euro range, includes High Explosive Extended Range Projectiles, Modular Charges, Fuzes and Primers. NSPA plays a critical role in supporting NATO’s Defence and Deterrence efforts through its Ammunition capabilities. For over 30 years, NSPA has provided ammunition support to 28 NATO Nations through the Ammunition Support Partnership (ASP).

In aggregating demands through multi-year, multi-national contracts, NSPA consolidates multinational ammunition procurement to ensure ASP Nations have access to a reliable, cost-effective, and secure supply of ammunition in the land, air, maritime and dismounted soldiers domains. At the July 2023 NATO Summit in Vilnius, Heads of State and Government endorsed the groundbreaking Defence Production Action Plan (DPAP) developed by the Conference of National Armaments Directors (CNAD). This action plan, focused on replenishing stockpiles of key equipment and increasing commonality across the alliance, is structured on three key pillars: aggregating demand, addressing defence industrial capacity, and enhancing interoperability.

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Lithuanian Land Forces PzH 2000 155 mm self-propelled howitzer
PzH 2000 155 mm self-propelled howitzer. (Photo by Lithuanian Land Forces)

Anticipating a central role for NSPA, the Plan envisions the Agency consolidating national munition requirements into multinational purchases. By coordinating procurement efforts, NSPA is able to negotiate better prices and multi-national multi-year contract terms with ammunition suppliers. These joint procurement initiative leverage economies of scale, streamlines logistics, and enhance interoperability and materiel standardization across NATO Nations. In January 2024, the Agency announced two large-scale contracts for 155, including two new multinational framework contracts valued at 1.1 BEUR for 155mm ammunition and fuzes serving CAESAR and PZH-2000 howitzer platforms and a contract valued at 5 BEUR for a combined quantity of up to 1,000 Patriot™ Guidance Enhanced Missiles (GEM-T) in support of a coalition of nations.

The CAESAR (Camion Équipé d’un Système d’Artillerie, Truck equipped with an artillery system) is a French 155 mm, 52-caliber self-propelled howitzer that can fire 39/52 caliber NATO-standard shells. It is installed on a 6×6 or 8×8 truck chassis. The CAESAR can accurately strike targets more than 40 kilometres (25 mi) away using “Extended Range, Full Bore” (ERFB) ammunition with base bleed, or targets over 55 kilometres (34 mi) away using rocket-assisted or smart ammunition. The PzH 2000 (Panzerhaubitze 2000, armoured howitzer 2000) is a German 155 mm self-propelled howitzer developed by Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) and Rheinmetall in the 1980s and 1990s for the German Army. The maximum range of the gun with standard issue DM92 propellant charges is 30 km with the standard DM121 boattail round, 40 km with base bleed rounds, and 54 km with M2005 V-LAP rocket-assisted projectile.

Ukrainian Army Uses France's Caesar Self-propelled Howitzer
Caesar Self-propelled Howitzer. (Photo by Ukrainian Army)

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