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Czech IFV replacement contract delayed another year

The contract for the procurement of 210 tracked IFVs for the Czech Army will not be signed before 2023. The contenders (from left to right) are the BAE Systems Hägglunds CV90 Mk IV, Rheinmetall Lynx KF41, and GDELS ASCOD 42. (Czech MoD)

The Czech Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced a reduction in its 2022 defence budget to around CZK88.2 billion (USD4.1 billion) on its website on 9 February but said there would still be funding for a new infantry fighting vehice (IFV), albeit not until 2023. The ministry confirmed to Janes on 10 February that the first instalment of CZK4.83 billion for the new vehicles had been cancelled, adding that the IFV contract would not be signed this year.

The MoD told Janes that a legal analysis on how to proceed was under way, which would not be completed before the end of this quarter, after which the ministry would decide on the next steps in the IFV programme.

This follows the suspension of the procurement of 210 IFVs on 5 November 2021 after a commission of experts completed the assessment of the three bids: from BAE Systems Hägglunds with the CV90 Mk IV, General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) with the ASCOD 42, and Rheinmetall with the Lynx KF41. The CZK52 billion (USD2.4 billion) procurement seeks to replace the Czech Army‘s BMP-2 IFVs.

The suspension was connected with the change in Czech defence minister following the 8–9 October 2021 elections, but the new minister, Jana Černochová, named the IFV programme among her priorities during a press conference on 10 January.

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