Sweden and UK cooperating on increased military support to Ukraine
On Thursday 16 March, the Government presented a strategic partnership with the United Kingdom to support Ukraine. The cooperation aims to improve logistics and maintenance of the Archer artillery units that Sweden intends to donate to Ukraine. It is proposed that eight units is to be donated, of which two are part of the maintenance system. The cooperation includes authorisation to sell 14 Archer artillery units to the UK, which allows the UK to donate the AS90 artillery system to Ukraine. An additional amending budget also includes proposals to authorise the donation of previously announced Leopard 2 battle tanks and to provide funds for the replenishment of defence equipment.
"This cooperation with the UK means that both Sweden’s and the UK’s support can be further increased. Artillery systems like Archer, together with combat vehicles and battle tanks, increase Ukraine’s defence capabilities and allow them to regain territory,” says Minister for Defence Pål Jonson.
Ukraine is still in great need of defence equipment and there is an extensive need for air defence systems and long-range precision combat capabilities, as well as various types of combat vehicles and battle tanks.
The Government has presented a bilateral partnership with the UK regarding artillery, focusing on continued support to Ukraine and cooperation on the Archer artillery system. The cooperation is based on a bilateral statement of intent from 2014 and the bilateral declaration of solidarity from 2022, and means that the UK will purchase 14 Archer artillery units. The strategic cooperation is also intended to continue to provide Ukraine with the military support it needs. The purchase is of importance to the UK in implementing its donation of the AS90 artillery system to Ukraine. The cooperation aims to improve logistics and maintenance of the Archer artillery units that Sweden intends to donate to Ukraine.
The Government has adopted an additional amending budget of more than SEK 6 billion through which eight Archer artillery units, of which two are maintenance units, will be donated to Ukraine. The budget also includes previously announced Leopard 2 battle tanks, and parts and ammunition for the HAWK anti-aircraft system. This support is coordinated with other countries and has been requested by Ukraine.
The transfer of the equipment to Ukraine also entails costs for transportation, training, protective security and setting up the equipment. In the amending budget, the Government proposes providing an additional SEK 524.5 million to expenditure area 6 to cover these costs.
So far, the Government has adopted eleven military support packages to Ukraine, amounting to some SEK 16.9 billion. Of this, some SEK 6.3 billion is included in this additional amending budget.
Facts about Archer:
Archer can combat hostile artillery and other specific targets from long range and with great precision. Archer is highly mobile and can open fire seconds after the unit is in position. The crew is protected in the unit, and the ammunition magazine is fully automated. Archer will be a valuable complement to Ukraine’s artillery capacity.
Facts about the cooperation with the UK:
The bilateral partnership with the United Kingdom builds on the bilateral memorandum of understanding from 2014 and the bilateral declaration of solidarity signed in 2022. In the declaration, the UK and Sweden state that regional and global challenges are best handled through common action. The UK and Sweden also agreed to continue improving their operative cooperation and further strengthen their bilateral partnership.