Today, on October 12th, the 15th International Defense Exhibition "Weapons and Security" is coming to an end. During the exhibition, which also became an effective international forum, the State Concern "Ukroboronprom" demonstrated the latest developments of enterprises and conducted key negotiations with foreign partners.

The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko pointed out the State Concern’s most interesting developments on display stressing that "Ukroboronprom’s enterprises" managed to stop using components of Russian production, replacing them with domestic ones and those  manufactured by NATO Member States.

For example, among "Ukroboronprom" main items displayed at the exhibition was the BM-21 UM "Berest" multiple rocket launcher system manufactured by the State Enterprise "Shepetovskyi Repair Plant". "Berest" is intended to replace the BM-21 "Hrad", which is currently used by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The use of modern digital technologies and a new chassis of domestic production give Berest major combat and operational advantages thereby significantly expanding military capabilities of the multiple rocket launcher system.

New digital technologies help integrate "Berest" into the information exchange system on the battlefield while increasing the accuracy and efficiency of firing several-fold. The new multiple rocket launcher system can launch 50 rockets compared to 40 rockets launched by "Hrad".

Similarly, new components manufactured by  NATO Member States were incorporated into BTR-70D (GM) manufactured by the State Enterprise "Zhytomyr Armored Vehicle Plant". The updated combat vehicle received new engines from the American Corporation "General Motors" and the "Delta" combat module with a 23 mm automatic gun and a digital fire control system.

The Zhytomyr enterprise also presented BMP-M1C, which was converted from the BRM-1K combat reconnaissance vehicle resulting in a significant increase in firepower, higher protection level and replacement of an outdated Soviet engine with the German Deutz engine. As a result, BMP-M1C can carry up to 8 servicemen and effectively support infantry units thanks to high firepower of the "Stilet" combat module.

Meanwhile, the Thai military expressed interest in BTR-4MB1, which was developed by specialists of Kharkiv-based Morozov Design Bureau.

During talks with the Deputy Commander of the Navy of Thailand Admiral Sangkorn Pongsiri, the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov discussed the possibilities of expanding bilateral military and technical cooperation. According to the Thai military, the Ukrainian BTR-4MV1 "can become the main combat vehicle of the Kingdom’s Marine Corp".

BTR-4MV1 was created taking into account the combat experience of the Ukrainian military and the latest design solutions of the NATO Member States. Due to changes in the front of the armored vehicle, as well as its conformity to the latest NATO trends in armored vehicles, a radically new level of protection was achieved.

In addition, during the exhibition key agreements were reached with companies of the NATO Member States. In particular, a memorandum was signed between the State Concern "Ukroboronprom" and Excalibur Company (the Czech Republic). The purpose of the document is to unite efforts of the Ukrainian and Czech sides with a view to developing, manufacturing and marketing innovative armored vehicles.

The cooperation between the State Concern "Ukroboronprom" and "Excalibur" also envisages the possibility of joint supply of high-tech products to third countries markets. According to Ukroboronprom General Director Pavlo Bukin, the signing of the Memorandum with the Czech company gave the State Concern an opportunity to gain a strategic partner, which is a NATO Member State.

The state-owned Company "Spetstechnoeksport", which is part of the State Concern "Ukroboronprom", signed with the Turkish Company "Aselsan" a Memorandum on the organization of joint production of Turkish radiocommunication means in Ukraine. It is expected that the arrangements made will be implemented through the mechanism of setting off mutual obligations between companies. The production of Turkish radiocommunication systems in Ukraine will allow the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine to gain access to state-of-the-art communication technologies.

"Promoboronexport", which is a member of the State Concern, and the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Moldova signed a memorandum on cooperation. The document envisages that the parties will carry out capital repairs and modernize armored vehicles and aircraft. In addition, agreement was reached that will enable Ukraine to supply its military equipment to the Armed Forces of the Republic of Moldova.

On October 12, the State Enterprise "Antonov", which is part of the State Concern "Ukroboronprom", reached agreement with the newly-established Ukrainian airline "FANair" on the supply of two An-158 aircraft under financial leasing terms. The Ukrainian aircraft builder and air carrier signed an appropriate memorandum to this effect, which will serve as the basis for launching the project financing.

The international exhibition "Weapons and Security", which is taking place in Kiev, has hosted a workshop on the development of the defense industry complex of Ukraine with the participation of representatives of NATO, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine, the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, the State Concern "Ukroboronprom" and the League of Defense Enterprises of Ukraine.

During the workshop, the NATO representative Gordon Davis, who is a Deputy Assistant to the  NATO Secretary General for Defense Investments, assured that the Alliance fully supports Ukraine’s defense sector reform, including, the implementation of NATO Member States’ modern  mechanisms which govern the interaction between customers and manufacturers.

In their turn, representatives of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine, the State Concern "Ukroboronprom" and the "League of Defense Enterprises of Ukraine" expressed great interest in reforming the current pricing mechanism within the framework of the State Defense Order, which is a leftover from Soviet times.

To reform the pricing mechanisms and to create a new, more modern model based on the experience of NATO Member States, the State  Concern proposed to the representatives of the National Security and Defense Council, the Cabinet of Ministers, the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and other ministries and agencies concerned to establish an interdepartmental working group. This group is supposed to make recommendations on how to reform the pricing mechanism in order to bring it in line with market and economically acceptable conditions which suit the interests of both government customers and Ukraine’s defense sector enterprises of state and private type of ownership.