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Rheinmetall inaugurates plant in Romania

Romania's GDF-103 anti-aircraft guns will be upgraded to the Skynex standard, including the Oerlikon GDF-009 TREO (pictured), primarily by Rheinmetall Air Defence in Zurich, with significant Romanian involvement by Mediaș. (Rheinmetall Air Defence)

Rheinmetall posted on LinkedIn on 16 May that it was inaugurating a defence plantin Mediaș, Romania, the same day.

The German company announced on 1 February that it had acquired a 72.5% majority share in Romanian military vehicle manufacturer Automecanica Mediaș, which has since operated in Romania under the name Rheinmetall Automecanica.

Rheinmetall estimates the annual sales potential of the company at around EUR300 million (USD326 million) and expects orders in the three-digit million-euro range in 2024.

Automecanica Mediaș produces special vehicles, truck build-ons, and trailers for the civilian and military market. It has been co-operating with Rheinmetall since 2022, when the two companies joined forces to operate a maintenance and repair facility for military vehicles in Satu Mare, Romania.

Rheinmetall expects the plant to play a key role in maintaining the operational readiness of Western-built combat vehicles in Ukraine and in providing logistic support. It added that its presence in Romania will provide NATO forces deployed on the alliance's eastern flank with faster and more secure supply chains.

In addition to trucks, there was a Lynx infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) at the inauguration. Rheinmetall is proposing the vehicle for Romania's IFV procurement programme. A Rheinmetall spokesperson told Janes on 17 May that, if selected, the company aims to generate 50% local added value, with Mediaș playing a key role in local procurement, finishing components, final assembly, and entry into service. In the medium term, he saw the possibility of welding taking place in Mediaș, with Rheinmetall plants in Hungary and Germany supplying components.

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