Poland has signed an agreement to procure 250 Abrams tanks from the US in a bid to strengthen its armed forces, as hostilities rage on in neighbouring Ukraine.

The agreement was signed by Polish Minister of National Defence Mariusz Błaszczak. The signing ceremony at the 1st Armoured Brigade, in Warsaw, was also attended by the US ambassador to Poland Mark Brzezinski.

As agreed, Poland will purchase Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 main battle tanks. The procurement will also include 26 M88A2 HERCULES maintenance vehicles, and 17 bridges M1074 Joint Assault Bridges.

In total, the deal values approximately $4.75bn, including ammunition, and associated training and logistics packages.

Minister Błaszczak said: “The agreement concerns the purchase of 250 Abrams tanks and accompanying technical support vehicles, including bridges, which will be used in the battle groups in which these tanks will operate.

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“The contract also includes a training and logistics package. As a part of the contract, we also bought ammunition in a meaningful amount, which significantly reinforce our armed forces. This is a very important reinforcement of the Polish Armed Forces.”

The first tanks for training are expected to reach Poland later this year while the remaining deliveries will be completed in 2026.

Poland plans to deploy the Abrams tanks in the eastern part of Poland, on the Eastern flank of Nato.

Minister Błaszczak added: “Abrams tanks will go to the 18th Mechanized Division. The task of these tanks, and the consequence of the fact that the Polish authorities are developing the Polish Army, is to deter a potential aggressor. We all are aware of what is happening beyond our eastern border.

“Later this year, 28 Abrams tanks from the US Army will be delivered to the Polish Army, so that the training of Polish soldiers can be launched.”

Last month, Reuters reported that the Polish Government is expected to increase defence spending more than previously planned, due to emerging security challenges.