The United States is allegedly going to sign another major contract on supply of military equipment to Europe. Reports on Poland’s plans to buy several hundred U.S. tanks now sound with renewed vigor.
According to the Polish web site Gazeta.pl, the Polish Ministry of National Defense is negotiating the purchase of about 250 Abrams M1A2 SERV3 main battle tanks from the U.S. Per anonymous high-ranked sources, Washington and Warsaw are currently negotiating on the details of a major contract.
“There have been rumors that this is possible. Now these are not only rumors anymore. The details are being clarified, although a final decision has not yet been made, ” the report reads.
Signing of the contract should reportedly take place in the early autumn. The supply should include about 250 Abrams M1A2 tanks that will equip four tank battalions, as well as about a dozen more vehicles for training. The Poles are also going to buy various types of related equipment, including engineering vehicles and bridge-layers, training equipment, ammunition, spare parts and training.
The contract for the purchase of 250 M1A2 SEP v3 Abrams tanks is estimated at 11 billion zlotys (2.9 billion US dollars) to 19 billion zlotys (5 billion US dollars).
As a cheaper option, the possibility of purchasing about 50 tanks to equip one tank battalion is also being considered, “although this does not make much sense,” the source said.
The enter of U.S. tanks in service with Polish forces faces some difficulties, since this is a fundamentally new type of tanks for Polish military with significant technical differences from those currently operating ones. The operation of Abrams tanks and the provision of units would force the Polish Army to elaborate additional logistics and supply systems, up to the construction of fuel storage facilities.
In case of success, such a purchase would also jeopardize the Wilk competitive program formally launched by the Polish Ministry of National Defense in 2017 for the purchase of promising tanks for the Polish Army, the implementation of which was supposed to be carried out with the broad participation of Polish national industry. This program supposes the purchase of about 500 new tanks to replace the T-72M1 and PT-91 Twardy tanks that are currently in service with the Polish Army.
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