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Ukraine, UK Sign Agreement On Arms Production Cooperation

Ukraine aims to produce about 1 million first-person view (FPV) drones this year. (File) Kyiv: Ukraine and Britain have

Ukraine, UK Sign Agreement On Arms Production Cooperation


Ukraine aims to produce about 1 million first-person view (FPV) drones this year. (File)

Kyiv:

Ukraine and Britain have signed a framework agreement to cooperate in the defence and arms production sector, officials said in Kyiv, part of a wartime effort to build up Ukraine’s domestic weapons industry by working with allies.

The document was signed at a military industry conference in Kyiv that was attended by about 30 British defence companies who visited to discuss potential joint ventures with Ukrainian weapons and defence producers.

“It is the first intergovernmental agreement on cooperation,” Oleksandr Kamyshin, Ukraine’s Minister for Strategic Industries, told reporters after the signing ceremony.

“Today British companies are working with Ukrainian companies and looking for opportunities to produce more weapons jointly.”

Greg Hands, UK Minister for Trade Policy, said he hoped the agreement would bring gains for Ukraine on the battlefield and also benefit its battered economy in the longer term.

More than two years since Russia’s February 2022 invasion, Ukrainian troops are outgunned and outmanned on the battlefield by a better-equipped and large foe.

Amid mounting concerns that military support from Kyiv’s Western partners is faltering, the Ukrainian government is ramping up efforts to produce its own weapons and to lure major Western producers to set up repair and production facilities in Ukraine, despite the threat of Russian bombardment.

British defence company BAE Systems, one of the first Western producers to set up a local entity in Ukraine, signed an agreement with Britain’s Defence Ministry to conduct maintenance, repair and overhaul of light guns on the ground in Ukraine.

Officials also said they hoped for more projects this year in the drone production sector. Many of the companies attending the conference were drone producers.

Ukraine aims to produce about 1 million first-person view (FPV) drones this year and is increasing its production of longer-range attack drones to conduct strikes deep inside Russia.

“We now recognise we need to step up to partnering with the Ukrainian defence industry to position Ukrainian defence industry to be better able to respond at speed and to support the Ukrainian economy…,” said Andy Start, Chief Executive of the UK’s Defence Equipment and Support.

“The momentum is building and we wish to see that momentum to continue to build at pace so we are stronger together.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)



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