Poland Expects to Ink $7.6 Billion Deal for Patriot Systems By End-2017 (excerpt)
(Source: Reuters; posted March 31, 2017)
By Lidia Kelly
Poland has dropped initial plans to buy the GEM-T missile, and will instead use the SkyCeptor, a new, low-cost hit-to-kill missile developed by Raytheon, which Polish industry would co-develop and produce in-country. (Raytheon image)
WARSAW --- Poland expects to sign a deal worth up to $7.6 billion with U.S. firm Raytheon to buy eight Patriot missile defense systems by the end of the year, Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz said on Friday.
Warsaw sees the deal as central to a thorough modernization of its armed forces by 2023, in light of what Macierewicz called "growing aggression and a growing threat from the East."
NATO member Poland has sped up efforts to overhaul its military following Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea peninsula in 2014 and in response to Moscow's renewed military and political assertiveness in the region.
"Those systems allow us to guarantee the security of the Polish state," Macierewicz told a news conference.
The contract still requires approval from the U.S. Congress, as it involves a purchase of advanced military technology for which special permission must be obtained. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Reuters website.
Green Light for the Polish Missile Defence. MoD: “No more than” PLN 30 Billion Cost in Wisła Programme (edited excerpts)
(Source: Defence24 Poland; posted March 31, 2017)
WARSAW --- Polish Minister of Defence Antoni Macierewicz announced March 31 that a revised request for information has been issued for the procurement of the Patriot missile defence system as part of the Wisła programme. Deputy Minister Kownacki noted that Poland will obtain a special waiver to acquire a modular Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS) in parallel with the US Army.
Macierewicz said the Wisła contract is expected to be signed by the end of this year, with *initial deliveries scheduled to take place in 2019.
The head of the Polish MoD noted that in line with the assumptions of the Letter of Request, Poland is to spend no more than 30 billion zlotys ($7.1 billion) on the Wisła system. Eight Wisła batteries are being ordered in total, and a 360-degree radar is to be delivered starting with the third battery. Within the delivery process, the initial batteries will be retrofitted with the 360-degree radar, while all of the systems are to be integrated with the IBCS suite from the very beginning.
According to Minister Macierewicz, implementation and proper introduction of the offset assumptions will be of critical importance. Macierewicz noted that in the current security context, procuring the Wisła system is “particularly relevant” for Poland, and the Polish Ministry of Defence is inclined to pursue a path through which the “latest” variant of the system is acquired.
Bartosz Kownacki, undersecretary at the Polish Ministry of Defence, stressed the fact that Poland has given up obtaining the GEM-T missiles, and will instead acquire the SkyCeptor interceptors which it expects to manufacture in Poland.
The SkyCeptor interceptor is a new, highly advanced, hit-to-kill missile, developed to defeat short- to medium-range ballistic and cruise missiles and other advanced air defense threats. Poland requested a low-cost interceptor option as part of the interest it expressed in acquiring Patriot. Polish industry would co-develop and produce the system with Raytheon.
Kownacki also placed a lot of emphasis the fact that the IBCS system will be introduced into the Polish Armed Forces in parallel with an equivalent process taking place in the US Army.
Poland, within the framework of the inter-governmental agreement concluded with Washington. has obtained a waiver allowing it to acquire the IBCS suite before its full-scale series production begins It is an important point of the deal, since IBCS suite has not yet entered even the LRIP phase. Within the FMS process, a formal notification and Congress authorization are yet to be issued, yet Poland sees the waiver itself as a major step forward, and as proof of the US trust.