Czech companies interested in lucrative military tender |

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Czech companies interested in lucrative military tender

Czech companies interested in lucrative military tender

Over ten bidders have reacted to the Defence Ministry tender for the acquisition of military off-road vehicles, Czech Deputy Defence Minister for Armament Filip Riha has told journalists. The deadline to take part in the tender expires in January.

With the winner, the Defence Ministry wants to sign a framework agreement, on the basis of which the military will acquire 600-1,200 off-road vehicles in the years to come.

For them, the Defence Ministry will pay one to two billion crowns, depending on the number of the ordered vehicles.

They are to replace the obsolete Soviet-made UAZ 469s. Chief of Staff Ales Opata has said it was immoral that in the 21st century, soldiers drive the cars which are older than he himself. The soldiers will also need to replace somewhat younger Land Rover Defender vehicles.

Riha said his department had processed a historically biggest amount of information and questions for the potential suppliers over the deal.

He said almost every day, he was signing further explanations for the details of the tender.

"The bid has provoked interest, which is positive," Riha said. So far, questions have been sent by 10 to 15 potential suppliers. He said he believed after the deadline for the tender was finished, the Defence Ministry would be able to select from a large pool of bidders.

The Defence Ministry will know the exact number of the bidders in the second half of January.

The Defence Ministry wants to know its winner next year. The same is true of the supplier of the anti-aircraft weapons SHORAD (Short Range Air Defense), which are to replace to currently used Russian-made KUBs.

For its four sets, the Defence Ministry will pay some ten billion crowns. Riha said the way in which the tender was put up was classified. "There is a special reason to keep it secret. After all the information is completed, the reason will be no longer valid after a time," he added.

Riha said the Defence Ministry was proceeding within protection against information leak. "We know which way to go, we have the ambition that the contract should be concluded next year," he added.

Last year, Jaromir Alan, who heads the Defence Ministry acquisition planning section, said the four current Russian short range air defence systems were outdated. The firing range of the new system will be about 14 kilometres and it will be able to fire at several targets at once.

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