The Netherlands has made an impassioned called to assemble a Patriot system for Ukraine using components already in stock with Nato Allies, stating that Ukraine is “fighting Europe’s fight”.

Netherlands will contribute the core components for a Patriot system and has identified which countries can offer additional parts and munitions, according to a 28 May 2024, release from its Ministry of Defence.

“We are engaged in talks with partners to compile a Patriot system, including training for Ukrainian crews,” said Dutch Defence Minister Kajsa Ollongren. “With our offer, and consulting with partner countries providing several key parts and munitions, we can provide Ukraine with at least one fully operational system in a short time frame.”

In Netherlands’ request to other Nato Allies for the scarce components, Netherlands drew strength from Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg’s recent comments at a 17 April 2024, press conference: “I have made it clear that if the only way to deliver support to Ukraine is to go below the Nato capability targets, well, that’s the right thing to do. At the end of the day, this has to be a national decision.”

Ollongren remarked that Stoltenberg’s position grants “room for creativity” for Nato countries, adding: “Industrial suppliers have pledged to speed up production and delivery of replacement systems. We are counting on that.”

On 3 January, Nato’s Support and Procurement Agency announced that is had reached a deal to procure up to 1,000 Patriot missiles for a coalition of Allies including Germany, Netherlands, Romania and Spain, as part of a $5.5bn contract with Raytheon and MBDA.

In April, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy asked for at least seven more Patriot systems to contribute to the defence of Ukraine from Russian bombardment against Ukraine’s cities and power plants. Patriot missile launchers are a crucial element among Ukraine’s multi-tier air defence system, providing the capacity to intercept and counter tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and advanced aircraft. 

Patriots are a long-range, all-altitude, all-weather air defence system. The modular architecture is chiefly composed of batteries of multiple launching stations, alongside a single fire control section containing a radar set, an engagement control station, an antenna mast group, and an electric power plant. The cost of a single system can run to $1bn.