The German company Rheinmetall is negotiating the construction of a tank factory in Ukraine. The head of the company, Armin Papperger, told the Rheinische Post newspaper about it.
According to the businessman, the construction of the plant will cost about 200 million euros, and it will be possible to protect it with air defense systems against Russian air raids. According to Papperger, the plant will be able to produce up to 400 Panther KF51 tanks per year.
The businessman described negotiations with Ukraine as “promising” and expressed hope that a decision would be made within the next two months.
“To win the war, Ukraine needs 600 to 800 tanks. Even if Germany gives up the 300 Leopard 2 tanks available for the Bundeswehr, it will still be too few,” Papperger said. He believes that the war in Ukraine will continue, “probably for years to come”.
“Western allies are sending enough weapons to allow Ukraine to defend itself, but the Ukrainians today lack the equipment to fully retake their territory,” Papperger said.
Deputy head of Russia’s Security Council Dmitry Medvedev called the news of talks on building a factory in Ukraine “a primitive trolling of the Kiev regime.”
“If, nevertheless, the Fritzes decide to build for real (although they seem like pragmatic people), we look forward to it. This event will be duly marked by greetings from Kalibr and other pyrotechnic devices”, wrote Medvedev in his Telegram channel. .
At the end of January, it became known that Poland would supply Ukraine with 14 German Leopard 2 tanks and its own modernized tanks. We are talking about 60 vehicles, 30 of which are the Polish main battle tank PT-91.
Germany has also approved the delivery of 178 Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine. The first two dozen combat vehicles should be ready to ship by summer. The ultimate goal is to deliver more than 100 tanks to Kiev in the first or second quarter of 2024.
The United States announced that it was ready to transfer 31 Abrams tanks to Ukraine.
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