According to the information obtained by Defence24.pl from the Czech Ministry of Defence, the requests for proposal have been sent to the following companies: Diehl, Kongsberg, Lockheed Martin, MBDA and Rafael. The requests in question are concerning air defence systems with ranges between 20 to 50 kilometres, capable of acting against a wide variety of airborne targets.
It is required that the new system to be procured by Prague is capable of operating together with the new 3D Mobile Air Defence Radars which are going to be purchased by the Czech Republic as a part of a separate tender. The value of the contract to be signed is estimated to be USD 140 million (CZK 3.5 billion). The process of acquiring the new radars is in progress, and the procedure involves, at the moment, the French Thales company, Israeli Elta manufacturer as well as the SAAB company from Sweden. The decision pertaining to acquisition of new radars, which has led to the current developments, was made, following a fiasco of the joint 3D radar development programme which was to be pursued by the Visegrad Group.
In the light of the fact that a requirement has been formed to use an external radar provided by another manufacturer, solely open architecture and flexible systems are being considered, as exclusively such systems are able to make use of the data coming from a variety of external sources. According to the information obtained, the offers include the Lockheed Martin/MBDA MEADS system, Israeli Rafael Spyder system, Kongsberg’s NASAMS SAM, as well as the German Diehl IRIS-T SLM system. As we were informed by the Czech MoD, the government expects to receive more information pertaining to the offers during the Industry Days held in Prague on 9th and 10th November, in case of which air defence systems will be the main topic discussed.
READ MORE: Radars For The Czech RBS-70 NG Launchers.
Czech Republic found itself in a situation similar to Poland, as a requirement emerged to acquire modern air defence systems for the Army, to replace the obsolete equipment. At the moment, Prague is looking forward to find a successor for the Post-Soviet 9K35 Strela-10M systems with the Swedish RBS-70 MANPADS, the range of which is defined as 8 kilometres. Besides the RBS-70, the Czech Army also has 4 2K12 Kub launchers at its disposal, which, even though they have been modernized, do not meet the requirements of the contemporary battlefield environments anymore. These systems are going to be replaced with a solution conforming to the NATO standards.
Notably though, the Czech tender involves the contractors also engaged in the Polish “Wisła” SHORAD programme: MBDA, Diehl, Kongsberg or Lockheed Martin.