Deputy Prime Minister Mariusz Błaszczak has approved a contract for the supply of 116 M1A1 ABRAMS tanks for the Polish Army.
Press Release, Warsaw, 04 January 2023: [auto-translated] “We are strengthening the Polish Army. We are strengthening the armoured fist of the Polish Army, we are strengthening the Polish armed forces in order to realistically and effectively deter the aggressor. One of the elements of this strengthening is equipping the Polish Army with equipment, which is the best argument in our entire deterrence policy. Abrams tanks are such equipment,” said Deputy Prime Minister Mariusz Błaszczak.
On Wednesday, January 4. at the 1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade in Wesoła, Mariusz Błaszczak, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of National Defence, approved a contract for the supply of 116 M1A1 ABRAMS tanks for the Polish Army.
“Last year, we signed an agreement on the acquisition of 250 Abrams tanks in the most modern version for the Polish Army. These tanks will reach us at the end of 2024, so at the end of next year. We are conducting negotiations on this matter, but the tanks for which I approved the contracts today will already be in the equipment of the Polish Army this year. And this is our great achievement that already this year the first examples of these tanks will be equipped with the Polish Army. The entire process of equipping the Polish Army with 116 Abrams tanks will end next year,” said the vice-president of the Council of Ministers during the meeting with the soldiers.
The subject of the contract concluded with the American side is the supply of 116 M1A1 ABRAMS tanks, which will be adapted to the requirements of the Polish Armed Forces, along with accompanying equipment, including twelve M88A2 HERCULES recovery vehicles, eight M1074 JOINT ASSAULT BRIDGES, six M577 command vehicles and 26 NG SECM workshops on the HMMWV chassis, as well as a training and logistics package.
The contract is the first stage of the project, which also includes a significant number of modern types of live ammunition, as well as training ammunition, in accordance with the maximum scope of the contract approved by the US Congress. The above orders, including sub-calibre armour-piercing ammunition or multi-purpose programmable ammunition, will be implemented successively.
The Deputy Prime Minister emphasised that Polish-American cooperation has reached the stage “in which we can talk about very measurable details of strengthening Polish-American relations, as evidenced by the approved agreement”.
“These tanks will go right here, to Wesoła. The tanks will go to the east of our country, so as to effectively deter the aggressor. (…) Thank you for our Polish-American cooperation, the effect of which is the fact that Polish tankers are already training on Abrams tanks, they are training at the training ground in Biedrusko, so they will be able to smoothly take over their duties regarding the use of Abrams tanks that will be delivered here to the 1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade. Thank you very much for this close Polish-American military cooperation. Thank you for the exercises that take place almost constantly between Polish and American troops,” added the head of the Ministry of National Defence.
The total value of the contract is approx. USD 1.4 billion net, of which nearly USD 200 million is financed by the American side under the aid funds granted to Poland, while deliveries of tanks and other military equipment will start this year and will be completed by the end of 2024.
“The contract provides for the acquisition of 116 Abrams tanks and the acquisition of technical vehicles. The entire support package is also guaranteed in this contract. We are negotiating a second agreement accompanying this agreement, which concerns the acquisition of ammunition by the Polish Army in large quantities. This is a task that still lies ahead of us, but due to the fact that I really wanted Abrams tanks to be delivered to the Polish Army as soon as possible, we decided to divide this process into two parts. Now we are still negotiating the issue of ammunition, but I can assure you that we are on the right track to quickly finalise this second agreement as well. (…) It can be said directly that a battalion consisting of Abrams tanks will be equipped with the Polish Army this year. Soldiers who are already trained to take up their duties on the march,” noted Deputy Prime Minister M. Błaszczak.
The logistics package includes a stock of spare and consumable parts and equipment for tank maintenance, as well as mobile container armament repair workshops and diagnostic devices. The training package includes comprehensive training for instructors, crews and technical staff. The deputy prime minister also emphasised that the contract also includes a support package for the Abrams.