Spain has issued a tender to acquire 155mm artillery ammunition, including specific variants such as illumination and smoke rounds, in a deal worth up to 150 million euros ($163.7 million).
Published on the European Union’s contract database on January 3, the tender has a deadline of January 31 and will be procured through funds from the Spanish Ministry of Defense and not through the European Union.
The Spanish Army fields two weapon systems using 155mm caliber ammunition – the US-sourced M109A5 self-propelled artillery platform and the Santa Bárbara Sistemas 155/52 gun.
According to GlobalData’s analysis of Spain’s defense equipment inventory, the Spanish Army has 66 155/52 APU-SIAC 155mm howitzers, along with 16 of the SBT-1 variants. Of the M109A5, it is believed that about 100 units are in service with the Spanish Army and Marines.
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GlobalData analysis shows that Spain’s defense budget grew from $9.5 billion in 2019 to $13.1 billion in 2023 and is projected to continue growing through 2028 as the country looks to meet the NATO benchmark of 2% of GDP for defense spending
The ambitions of European artillery ammunition do not correspond to reality
Artillery munitions production has been a key topic of discussion among senior EU leadership, with Ursula von der Leyen, head of the European Commission, calling for an increase in defense spending and artillery munitions manufacturing across all EU member states.
In a December speech to the European Defense Agency, von der Leyen said European Union countries will produce one million artillery shells a year from 2024, as the continent’s defense industries shift to a more active production line in the face of Russia’s aggression. Ukraine.
Speaking to members of the European Defense Agency (EDA) in late November, von der Leyen claimed that European Union countries – referred to in the speech as “Europe” – had produced or delivered 480,000 artillery rounds to Ukraine.
“This would have been unthinkable just two years ago. And it already marks a huge step forward for our defense cooperation,” von der Leyen said.
However, this figure was less than half of the amount originally intended to be produced for Ukraine. Kiev is fighting for economic and military support from its allies in the US and Europe, offering a bleak forecast for the ongoing war with Russia.
Read the original at Defence247.gr