Estonia is to buy 81 armoured transport vehicles operated by the Dutch Army from the Netherlands by 2015, following an agreement between the two countries.

The Sisu XA-188 wheeled armoured vehicles, acquired under the Defence Development Plan 2009-2018, will protect soldiers from small arms, mines and improvised explosive devices.

The first batch of the armoured vehicles will be deployed to provide additional transport protection for Estonian troops in Afghanistan.

The contract has been valued at 320m kroon ($28m), which will be paid in accordance with deliveries, according to

The Finland-built vehicles will undergo maintenance and repair in the Netherlands before the delivery, which is slated to run from 2011 to 2015.