Ukraine will receive more PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzers than expected, and it is brand new, not refurbished.
Hundreds of state-of-the-art PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzers will certainly significantly strengthen the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The German government has agreed to sell Ukraine 100 modern self-propelled guns PzH 2000 under a contract worth 1.7 billion euros. Thus, one unit will cost 17 million Euro.
According to the German magazine Der Spiegel, the licensing of the manufacturer Krauss-Maffei Wegmann took place on July 13. It should be emphasized again, these are brand new PzH 2000 guns, not German Army reserves. The deal has been under consideration since April, when Ukraine sent a request to buy German weapons.
According to Der Spiegel, production of the weapon “must begin immediately”. But the process of building hundreds of PzH 2000 guns will take place over several years, which is a long-term reinforcement for the Ukrainian Army. Another issue that should be mentioned is the capacity of the German defense industry to fulfill the contract for 100 PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzers. According to Mr. Melnyk, the matter is entirely up to the German government, and Berlin needs to make the appropriate decision.
The production time of heavy weapons such as self-propelled howitzers usually lasts from 9 to 12 months. For example, when Poland produced 50 Krab self-propelled howitzers for Ukraine, the handover could not happen overnight. But it is possible that Germany’s Krauss-Maffei Wegmann plant has a larger capacity than Poland’s Huta Stalowa Wola plant, and a certain number of PzH 2000 self-propelled artillery hulls are still in the company’s inventory, then progress will be is accelerated.
The Ukrainian Armed Forces are deploying 15 PzH 2000 self-propelled artillery systems, 5 of which were delivered by the Netherlands and the remaining 10 by Germany. That’s not including the 3 PzH 2000 complexes that arrived in Ukraine just a few days ago. It is expected that three more self-propelled guns will be delivered before the end of July, accompanied by M270 MLRS multiple rocket launchers.
Thus, after much criticism, Germany is speeding up the supply of heavy weapons to the Armed Forces of Ukraine. This change is probably due to the recent tension between Berlin and Moscow, related to gas supply cuts.