Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace has secured a contract valued at approximately Nkr16bn ($1.5bn) with the Polish Ministry of National Defence.

This agreement will see Kongsberg deliver four NSM (Naval Strike Missile) Coastal Defence System (CDS) squadrons to Poland.

Poland, a long-standing pioneer in acquiring the NSM CDS capability, initially procured it in 2008, followed by an additional squadron in 2014. This contract award builds upon a decade-long successful partnership between Kongsberg, the Polish Government, and the Polish industry.

The new deliveries are set to extend well into the 2030s, ensuring Poland remains equipped with defence solutions. James Marques, aerospace, defence, and security analyst at GlobalData, explains how the NSM coastal defence systems will protect Poland and who against, “The NSM has a range of around 200km-250km depending on the model, but this should be more than enough to cover a good stretch of the Baltic sea in North Poland, its only coastline.

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There’s only one threat in mind here, and that would be Russia’s Baltic Sea Fleet, but with Sweden and Finland joining NATO and all countries re-arming that fleet, it’s being strongly countered.”

This coastal defence system is built upon the NASAMS command and control framework with NSM control functionality. Importantly, Polish industry will play a role, contributing to portions of the project, including the communication system, vehicles, part of the command and control system, and participating in system integration activities.

Geir Håøy, President and CEO of Kongsberg, expressed his enthusiasm, stating, “This contract is the largest single contract in the history of Kongsberg and is an important milestone in our more than 200-year-long history. Poland has been a long-standing partner, and we are proud to sign this agreement.

With the changed security situation in Europe, Poland is firm in its commitment to ensure important defence capabilities, and for Kongsberg as an industry partner, this ensures predictability to invest and continue to build capacity to deliver on these needs.”

As part of this landmark contract, Kongsberg is committed to providing training and technical support, including simulators, to enable Polish personnel to conduct maintenance services within Poland, ensuring long-term operational effectiveness.

Eirik Lie, President of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, underscored the significance of the NSM CDS, saying, “The NSM coastal defence system plays a significant role in supporting nations’ ability to defend their territory and citizens.

We are proud to support Poland in building up such a capability. The determination demonstrated by the Polish Ministry of National Defence to acquire more NSM CDS is a sign of trust and confirms that our system represents the most effective capability available.”

The NSM is a versatile missile that can be launched from both land- and sea-based platforms and is already in use by, or undergoing delivery to, a total of 12 countries. Initially developed by Kongsberg for the Norwegian Navy, the NSM boasts a stealth design that makes it challenging to detect, and its seeker system enables autonomous target recognition, further enhancing its precision and effectiveness.

However, it’s important to note that the success of this contract is dependent on approved export financing, which is expected to be finalised within the coming weeks.