The UK government has called on Welsh industry to exploit the opportunities arising from the United Kingdom’s upcoming acquisition of the Boxer 8×8 mechanised infantry vehicle (MIV).
An industry day will be held in South Wales in September that will encourage industry from around the United Kingdom to join the supply chain of the programme, an acquisition that could see about 500 vehicles acquired for the British Army alone.
An assessment phase for the UK’s MIV acquisition is currently under way and is expected to be completed in 2019. The assessment includes examining different manufacturing locations and supply chains for the programme.
The United Kingdom announced that it had rejoined the Boxer effort in April 2018 after leaving the development in 2004 to concentrate on its now defunct Future Rapid Effect System (FRES) programme, something that evolved and was eventually split into the UK’s MIV and Ajax programmes respectively.
Ahead of this in February 2018, the ARTEC consortium responsible for the Boxer development (comprising Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall) teamed with BAE Systems, Pearson Engineering, and Thales UK, guaranteeing that 100% of the final assembly of the vehicle would take place in the United Kingdom.
While industrial participation in the Boxer development is important to the British Army’s acquisition, the government is now aiming to broaden this opportunity to ensure that work share is made across the country.
Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns is behind the call for industry in Wales to be involved and wants companies to sign up to the ARTEC-supported industry event at the University of Wales’ Treforest campus on 10 September. Any deal will be subject to commercial negotiation and assessment, the government added.
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