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BUCHAREST (Romania), November 13 (SeeNews) - General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS), a unit of U.S.-based General Dynamics Corporation, said it has started the production of Piranha 5 military vehicles at the factory of its strategic Romanian partner Uzina Mecanica Bucuresti (UMB).
The vehicles will be produced in Romania under a strategic cooperation and transfer of technology project between GDELS – Mowag and UMB, GDELS said in a press release earlier this month.
"The strategic cooperation between GDELS and the UMB is an excellent example on how we plan to modernize our Armed Forces with modern technology. It also represents a great opportunity for our Romanian economy to strengthen and sustain our national industry base in this important segment including export opportunities. I am proud to say, that 80% of the investment we take in this project will return to the benefit of our local economy," Romania's prime minister Ludovic Orban said.
In January 2018, as part of the Romanian army’s plan to modernise its legacy wheeled armored vehicle fleet, GDELS signed a contract with the Romanian army to deliver up to 227 Piranha 5 wheeled armored vehicles in six different configurations.
"The vast transfer of technology and the local production of the PIRANHA 5 also represents an enormous opportunity to the Romanian industry for the future," GDELS vice-president Thomas Kauffmann said.
Romania, which joined NATO in 2004, plans to spend a total of 9.8 billion euro ($10.8 billion) until 2026 to boost its defence capabilities, the National Defence Council (CSAT) said in August.
General Dynamics European Land Systems is a Europe based business unit of General Dynamics Corporation. Headquartered in Madrid, GDELS employs some 2,200 at its sites in Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Spain and Switzerland.
Its products range from wheeled armored and tracked combat vehicles to amphibious bridges and ferry systems.
($= 0.9072 euro)