The Estonian government has decided to buy 44 CV90 infantry vehicles for the Estonian Defence Forces from the Netherlands, in what is the largest defence procurement project ever for the country, at USD 171 million.
Previously, the largest Estonian defence procurement projects were the purchase of MBDA-made Mistral missiles for about USD 84.5 million in 2009, and three Sandown-class minehunter vessels from the UK’s Royal Navy for about USD 64 million in 2007.
“The infantry vehicles will take the Estonian defence ability to a new level,” Defence Minister Sven Mikser said.
The CV90s will enter the service from 2016 and are expected to remain in use for at least 20 years. The vehicles have been used by the Dutch, but are relatively new.
The CV90 infantry vehicles are produced since 1993 by Sweden-based BAE Systems Hägglunds AB and they’re in service with the Dutch, Danish, Norwegian, Swiss, Finnish and Swedish defence forces. It has also seen service in Afghanistan.
In a related development, Dutch troops will take part in the next Estonian Independence Day parade and hold joint exercises with the Scouts Battalion.
Mikser said the Netherlands had a clear desire to further strengthen defence cooperation with Estonia. Among other things, the Netherlands is contributing to Baltic Air Policing.
The Estonian-Dutch defence cooperation has mainly been focused on procurement. Since 2004, Estonia has acquired over 1,100 lightly used and well-maintained trucks and SUVs, some 500 trailers and staff containers and 81 SISU XA-188 armoured personnel carriers.
Cover photo: CV90 in the Swedish service.