British Defense Contractor BAE Systems to Set Up Production Unit in Ukraine

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The British defense equipment manufacturer BAE Systems is establishing an arms and ammunition production facility in Ukraine, reports have confirmed.

The development comes days after Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said weapons used by Nato and supplied to Ukraine will be manufactured in his country. "We have domestic artillery on the battlefield today, using NATO-standard 155mm shells, which have never been seen before in Ukraine. We now have production and production of not one system, but several systems," Zelensky said in a TV interview earlier this week.

BAE Systems
BAE Systems Reuters

105mm Light Artillery Guns

It is not clear if Zelensky was referring to BAE or any other Western defense contractor. However, Ukraine has been using weapons and ammunition manufactured by the British defense contractor during the ongoing war with Russia.

According to Reuters, BAE said it would set up a unit to produce 105mm light artillery guns in Ukraine and would explore potential local partners.

"The best weapons that are currently helping our warriors defend Ukraine should be produced in Ukraine ... The development of our own weapons production is a top priority," Zelenskiy tweeted after holding a meeting with BAE chief executive Charles Woodburn, the news agency reported.

Booming Industry

Arms manufacturing locally in Ukraine is booming as weapons makers conclude that it's beneficial to produce them locally. The report says that Ukraine has green-signaled the domestic production of CV90 family of armoured vehicles, which are made by a Swedish unit of BAE. Kyiv said it is looking to bolster cooperation with Sweden in this regard.

Ukraine Army
The Ukraine forces has achieved small victory over Russian forces in the past couple of weeks. Pexels

Meanwhile, local company Ukrainian Armor said last week it has delivered more than 600 mortar guns to the Ukrainian military, after restarting production recently. Ukrainian Armor, also known as Ukrainska Bronetekhnika, also produces Varta and Novator armoured vehicles.

"Since the beginning of a full-fledged invasion, part of our production capacity in the east of the country was captured by the enemy ... We have found a way to resume production cycles, conduct qualification tests and launch the production of 60mm, 82mm and 120mm mortars at relokovanih [relocated] sites," its CEO Vladislav Belbas said.