War in Ukraine: France and Australia reach agreement to supply 155 mm shells to Ukraine
Sylvie Claire / January 31, 2023
France and Australia have reached an agreement to supply 155mm shells to Ukraine to support it in its war against Russia, French Armed Forces Minister Sebastien Lecornu and Australian Minister Richard Marles announced Monday.
Several thousand 155mm shells are going to be manufactured jointly," Lecornu said, while Marles spoke of a "multi-million dollar project" by Australia, a "new cooperation between the Australian and French defense industries. »
This is part of the support efforts that Australia and France are providing to Ukraine to make sure that it is able to stand in this conflict and end it on its own terms," the Australian minister said.
The idea is to provide significant assistance, and an effort that is continuous over time," said Lecornu, aiming for first deliveries in the first quarter of 2023, but declining to go into further details of the contract.
The French group Nexter will be in charge on the French side, while Australia will be "able to bring in powders," the French minister explained.
The defence ministers met with their foreign affairs counterparts, French Catherine Colonna and Australian Penny Wong, in a 2+2 format in Paris as part of a recent revival of Franco-Australian cooperation. This had been seriously affected by the Aukus affair in 2021, when Canberra cancelled a major French submarine contract and chose to buy American submersibles.
The 155 mm shells are those fired by several Western artillery pieces supplied to Ukraine in its war against Russia, such as the French Caesars, the American M777s, or the German Panzerhaubitze 2000.