Mariusz Błaszczak, head of the Polish MoD, issued an ordinance that acts as the formal foundation for transforming the Armament Inspectorate into the Armament Agency, as of 1st January 2022.
The establishment of the Armament Agency is an element of a broader reform that would apply to the military procurement scheme. The new organ would take over most of the responsibilities associated with the process, thus consolidating it and making it far more efficient. The Armament Agency would be one of the two key bodies taking part in that process - alongside the Technical Modernization Council that has been active for some time now.
The most important decisions made by the Polish Ministry of Defence, regarding the Armament Agency, and the relevant systemic changes had taken place earlier. The ordinance issued now is a step that formalizes the establishment of the new body - through a transformation of the Armament Inspectorate. The Armament Agency would also be responsible for other areas, including the ones that were earlier managed by the I3TO (Inspectorate for Implementation of Innovative Defence Technologies) organ based in Warsaw, and the Offset Agreements Bureau. Both bodies above would be disbanded, as of 31st December.
According to the statute that is the appendix to the decision made by the Polish Ministry of Defence, the Armament Agency is to be a budget entity subordinated to the head of the Polish Ministry of Defence. The subordination would be further defined by a separate set of regulations. The Armament Agency would be headquartered in Warsaw, and it is going to remain active within the territory of Poland. The new body is to take on the English name of "Armament Agency" [Agencja Uzbrojenia in Polish].
The Agency would remain responsible for:
- Tasks tied to market analysis related to military equipment procurement, and services required by the Polish Armed Forces; implementation of the military equipment/related services procurement processes; handling the military equipment-related construction works;
- Completion of R&D tasks aimed at increasing the operational capabilities of the Polish Armed Forces;
- Managing the undertakings tied to acquisition and management of IP rights, regarding the requirements of the Polish Armed Forces;
- Completion of tasks assigned by the head of the Polish MoD, based on regulations of the Act issued on 26th June 2014, on some agreements concluded in relation to procurements having basic relevance for national security (Dz. U. [Journal of Laws] 2021, item 1643);
- Conclusion and supervision of public procurement contracts regarding the acquisition of military equipment and services, in line with the requirements of the Polish Armed Forces.
The bylaws also read that the Agency, when pursuing its tasks, would collaborate with the bodies of the Polish MoD, and Polish and foreign entities, as well as international organizations, in the domain that stems from the scope of activities performed by the Agency. The activities are managed by the Head of the Agency. The person appointed to be the Head of the Armament Agency is also a third-degree funds administrator, acting directly under the administrator of Part 29 of the Budget [National defence]. He can authorize troops and Agency employees to make decisions on his/her behalf, within the scope of the proxy rights granted.