General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) has entered into an agreement to support the production of wheeled armoured vehicles, in Romania.

The local arm of the company, GDELS-Romania (GDELS-RO), will create an industrial consortium with Romanian partner C.N. ROMARM Uzina Mecanica Bucuresti (UMB) to set up the capability in the country.

The agreement was signed in the Romanian capital of Bucharest, in the newly established vehicle production facility. Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca and other officials were present at the event.

GDELS signed a contract in 2018 to deliver up to 227 PIRANHA 5 wheeled armoured vehicles to Romania. The company has already delivered 60 locally produced vehicles.

The establishment of the new consortium is expected to facilitate cooperation between GDELS-RO and UMB, as well as ensure subsequent deliveries.

GDELS-Romania managing director Marinica Mirzu said: “This strategic partnership and cooperation on our PIRANHA 5, one of the most advanced 8×8 wheeled armoured vehicles in the world, demonstrates the clear and strong commitment of General Dynamics European Land Systems to become the leading and most reliable land systems supplier in Romania, and for the Romanian Army.”

UMB managing director Mihai Rafiu said: “This consortium agreement between our companies represents a key element of our national security, and makes the PIRANHA 5 programme one of the best examples on how to bring advanced vehicle technology to our country.”

Nato Response Force troops were deployed in Romania, after Russia invaded Ukraine. The response force was deployed to strengthen the defensive posture in the eastern part of the alliance.