The Czech Republic negotiates the acquisition of 50 Leopard 2A7+ heavy tanks

Since the start of the conflict in Ukraine, the Czech Republic has been one of the countries most involved in providing military support to Ukrainian fighters. Despite a reduced armed force of only 25.000 soldiers and reservists, and a defense budget capped at €4 billion per year, Prague did not hesitate to transfer part of its stock of reserve T-72M1 tanks to Kyiv, but also artillery, anti-aircraft defense and ammunition systems, and intends to continue this effort until the end of the conflict. In this regard, the country has obtained the support of Berlin, which announced the transfer of 15 Leopard 2A4 heavy tanks taken from German reserve stocks, in order to compensate for Czech deliveries to Ukraine and thus preserve the defense of the country within the framework of NATO.

But Prague does not intend to stop there. In effect, by the voice of its Minister of Defense Jana Cernochova, the country has announced that it has entered into discussions with Berlin with a view to acquiring around fifty new Leopard 2 heavy tanks, this time to the latest A7+ standard, so as to continue the modernization effort begun several years ago. In fact, with 65 Leopard 2s and 30 T72s modernized to the high-performance M4CZ standard, the Czech armies will field a heavy breaking force perfectly complemented by 127 8×8 Pandur II infantry fighting vehicles co-produced with Austria and a new call for tenders for a hundred additional modern VCIs to come, the 100 Dana self-propelled guns and CAESAR 8×8, and some 400 armored personnel carriers, including 62 Titus co-produced with French company Nexter.

Prague has confirmed its intention to order 52 CAESAR guns in 8×8 version to modernize its artillery

After a sluggish market for more than 20 years, the demand for the delivery of modern heavy tanks has increased considerably in recent years, including in Europe. These last months, Hungary has confirmed the order for 44 Leopard 2A7+ tanks, Poland of 250 American Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 tanks, Norway will have to arbitrate this year between the Leopard 2A7+ and the South Korean K2 Black Panther to replace its Leopard 2A4NO acquired second-hand in the Netherlands in 2001. Several other European countries, including recently Greece, but also Great Britain and France, undertook to modernize their park of heavy tanks towards the last standard of their respective models. Beyond European borders, the heavy tank market has also regained its appeal, with the order for 500 T-90MS in local production by Egypt, more than 460 copies of the Bishma (derived from the T90) in India, and 108 Abrams M1A2 for Taiwan, 75 for Australia and a fifties in discussion with Bogota.

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