Thursday, 15 October saw Latvian Minister of Defense Artis Pabriks, Finnish Minister of Defense Antti Kaikkonen and the company Patria Land Oy president Jussi Järvinen signed an agreement on research and development of a common 6×6 armored car system based on Patria vehicles.
“The agreement signed today is an important step in the development of the National Armed Forces, as further in-depth cooperation with Finnish partners will allow finding the best solutions to increase the mobility of our soldiers. Evaluating the cooperation so far, I have gained confidence that in case of a successful outcome of the project, Latvian industrial companies will also benefit,” said Pabriks.
The armored car development agreement aims at producing a common platform for the development of 6×6 type all terrain vehicles to transport soldiers and operate command functions. The agreement will allow other possible vehicle variants to be developed at a later stage.
“We welcome the fact that, despite the situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are able to continue bilateral defense cooperation. Latvia and Finland have been able to harmonize their demands and reach an agreement,” said Kaikkonen.
It is planned that the research phase of the new vehicles will conclude at the end of 2021, after which the partner countries will be able to start negotiations on the purchase of the new 6×6 armored vehicles. The first deliveries of 6×6 vehicles could even take place in 2021.
The total value of the vehicle development contract is approximately 7.3 million euros, with costs covered equally by Latvia and Finland.