The Polish Ministry of Defense (MoN) has approved the purchase of 48 additional Krab Self-propelled cannon artillery systems and 36 accompanying support vehicles. The total value of this contract amount to 3.8 billion Polish Zlotys or $794 million. Poland had previously ordered 96 of these systems in 2016 although these are not expected to be fully delivered until 2024.
According to Polish Minister of Defense, Mariusz Błaszczak:
“The first contract from 2016 concerned the order of four artillery batteries over the course of eight years. The order which I approved just a moment ago concerns two artillery batteries. However, these two batteries will be procured within 2 to 2.5 years. This proves the industrial output capacity of the Polish Armaments Group and the Polish defense industry has grown.”
The AHS Krab is a self-propelled 155mm cannon artillery system built in Poland on the South Korean K9 artillery chassis of which and initial 24 were delivered from Korea while Poland began licensed production. With a range of 40 kilometers, the Krabs are intended to be a divisional asset. The system has already proven its worth in Ukraine where 18 had previously been donated by Poland (out of the 80 Poland then had on hand). June also saw Ukraine agree to purchase 54 of the systems from Poland.
The purchase comes at a time when Poland is massively ramping up its military purchases and production; the country has been one of the key weapon providers to Ukraine and has used the war as an opportunity to carry out a massive military modernization program. Poland has ordered nearly 400 Abrams tanks to replace the Soviet-era equipment sent to Ukraine and to supplement its fleet of 250 Leopard tanks. On top of 28 Abrams currently in Poznan designated for training, 116 M1A1 SAs are to arrive in 2023 and an addition 250 M1A2 SEPv3 are set to arrive between 2025 and 2024. Other recent purchases by Poland include Italian Leonardo helicopters, Korean K2 tanks and Korean K9 Howitzers.