Arms deliveries to Ukraine: Less bureaucracy and more speed required

Status: 02/20/2023 10:04 a.m

Ukraine urgently needs weapons and ammunition to ward off Russian attacks. The West wants to deliver – but especially in Germany bureaucracy delays the processes. Politics and industry are demanding rapid reforms.

The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Armed Forces, Eva Högl, is pushing for long-term financial commitments from politicians for the armaments industry and a simplification of the award procedure. “The industry must now build up production capacities as quickly as possible, and for this they also need commitments from politicians that this will be financed – beyond the federal budget for 2024,” says the SPD politician to the editorial network Germany (RND).

In any case, the defense budget must be increased by ten billion euros beyond the 100 billion special fund. “We need the money, but also better processes and structures. Everything has to happen much faster.” This applies to the new procurement and the replacement of the device that will be handed over to Ukraine. “We have to simplify the legal hurdles, the legal provisions. It starts with European public procurement law.” According to Högl, procurement problems exist in all European member states.

Airbus in “unsatisfactory situation”

The aircraft manufacturer Airbus alone, which builds the A400M military transport aircraft, is currently waiting for export permits from the federal government worth several billion euros. The head of the armaments division, Michael Schöllhorn, commented on this to the Reuters news agency. “We are already seeing interest from various countries in the A400M. Unfortunately, we are currently finding it difficult to obtain the German export licenses in good time,” criticized Schöllhorn and called for faster export and approval procedures.

“Our current problem is that we have not received any orders from the turn of the century and important exports are not approved,” criticized the manager. “In this respect, this is a very unsatisfactory situation for us, not least with a view to the order intake.” Shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine, Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced a “turning point” in security policy. A special fund of over 100 billion euros is intended to whip the Bundeswehr into shape.

According to Schöllhorn, orders for several platforms – not just for the A400M – are stuck with the government. Schöllhorn did not name a specific amount, but emphasized: “In total, that’s billions.” In his speech at the Munich Security Conference, the Federal Chancellor stressed that the production lines of the industry had to run. “In order to ensure that, we need orders – all the more so if we are denied export at the same time.”

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