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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Ministry of National Defense: we want the Polish version of K2 tanks to be produced in Poznań

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Deputy Prime Minister and head of the Ministry of National Defense Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz maintains plans to produce the Polish version of the Korean K2 tank at the Military Automotive Works in Poznań. He added that the Ministry of National Defense would like the H. Cegielski plant in Poznań to also produce bodies for the Borsuk and AHS Krab IFVs.

At Thursday's press conference, the head of the Ministry of National Defense, Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz, said that the ministry wants the Polish version of the Korean K2 tank to be produced at the Military Automotive Works in Poznań.

– We want the Polish equivalent, the Polish version of the K2 tank, to be produced here (…) We want it to be produced in Poznań. Deputy Minister of National Defense Paweł Bejda and Deputy Minister of State Assets Marcin Kulasek are going to Korea (South Korea – ed.) with such a mission – said the minister.

– They start on Sunday and will talk about new contracts for the Polish army. One of the most important topics of talks will also be the production line for the Polish version of the K2 tank, which should be located, according to our assumptions, here in Poznań – he emphasized.

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Building tanks in the shadow of the problems of H. Cegielski's plant

When asked how many K2 tanks would be built in Poland, Kosiniak-Kamysz replied that initially “there was talk of 820 machines produced in the Polish version”. – We will probably provide details after the latest decisions and talks of Deputy Minister Bejda – he added.

The head of the Ministry of National Defense also talked about problems, including: with debt, the H. Cegielski – Poznań (HCP) plant, which was taken over by Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (PGZ) in September. He also noted that PGZ had not placed the expected orders with the Poznań factory.

Korean K2 Black Panther tank milio-polskie.pl

– We want to change this. After a meeting at the Ministry of State Assets, but also after examining the purchasing and production possibilities in Poland, we would like – and in our opinion, at this stage (…) the Cegielski plant could be ready and would be able to cope with the order for Krab gun howitzer bodies and bodies for Borsuk infantry fighting vehicles – said the minister.

In this context, he expressed hope that the procedure of testing and approval for use by the military of the Borsuk IFV will soon be completed.

Municipalization of the Cegielski plant

According to Kosiniak-Kamysz, the mayor of Poznań, Jacek Jaśkowiak, expressed his readiness to municipalize the Cegielski plant due to its poor financial condition. He emphasized that due to, among others, specialists working in this company, e.g. welders, cannot be allowed to decline. When asked by journalists, he admitted that it was about the city's partial share in the company's ownership package.

– I believe that municipalization has its great advantages, because it is the host's responsibility for what is happening. I would like Poznań to take part in this. First, let's recapitalize HCP, give them strength, and then let's involve Poznań in the municipalization process, he said.

Jacek Jaśkowiak, when asked about the potential municipalization of the Cegielski plant, said that it was about helping to save the company. – Today, in fact, real estate (HCP) has been transferred to a large extent to the Industrial Development Agency, but also to developers. We must save Cegielski, said the mayor of Poznań.

Press conference with the participation of Jacek Jaśkowiak and Władysław Kosiniak-KamyszJakub Kaczmarczyk/PAP/EPA

Kosiniak-Kamysz: we found the arms industry in an inefficient situation

The head of the Ministry of Defense, speaking about the Polish Armaments Group, noted that when the current government took over control of it from the previous team, they found “disarray and mess”.

– We found the Polish arms industry in an inefficient situation. Low production capacity, inefficiency of this production. Time is needed to fix this. Poland will buy a lot – assured the minister. He added that purchases of military equipment should be 50 percent be implemented by Polish companies.

When asked whether the Ministry of National Defense should take over supervision of PGZ from the Ministry of State Assets, Kosiniak-Kamysz said that for now he has no complaints about cooperation with MAP. He assessed that the lack of an appropriate number of orders for military equipment in PGZ companies resulted from “the weaknesses of our predecessors” and not the structure of the arms industry.

– Of course, there are considerations that would probably make us say straight: yes, it would be best if it was in one hand. If necessary, I will submit such a request. I have no complaints about the cooperation with MAP, in fact I am satisfied with it, he assured.

The minister was asked when the Orka project, concerning the acquisition of new submarines for the Polish Navy, would be finalized. – I don't know if it will be possible to complete the negotiations this year, because there are several countries that have signed up for this process and we have to choose the best offer – he noted.

When asked about the project announced by the previous management of the ministry to build a Heavy Infantry Fighting Vehicle, which is to complement the lighter, floating Borsuk IFV, he said that he had nothing to announce on this subject for now.

Main photo source: milio-polskie.pl



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