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The German Ministry of Defence (MoD) has awarded a contract to Rheinmetall for the production and delivery of 35mm ammunition for the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

The contract is valued in the low three-digit million euros range.

The order requires Rheinmetall to deliver a total of 300,000 rounds of the same ammunition that will be used by the Ukrainian forces with their Gepard anti-aircraft tanks.

The company will deliver 15,000 rounds each of ‘Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot – Tracer’ (APDS-T) and ‘High Explosive Incendiary – Tracer’ (HEI-T) ammunition.

According to Rheinmetall, the combination of APDS-T and HEI-T rounds will provide enhanced and effective engagement capabilities to the Ukrainian troops to counter a wide range of targets.

Delivery of the first APDS-T rounds is expected to take place later this year. Following the initial delivery, the company will shift the production from APDS-T to HEI-T by mid-2024.

Currently, Rheinmetall is working on the expansion of its medium-calibre ammunition production capacity at its Unterlüß plant in Germany. Work under the contract is expected to be completed later in spring this year.

The expanded production line will allow Rheinmetall to meet the increased global demand.

The latest contract builds on German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius’ announcement made during the Ukraine Defence Contact Group meeting in Brussels, Belgium.

Pistorius said that Germany will now be responsible for delivering Gepard ammunition to Ukraine and its production will be undertaken domestically in Germany itself.

The minister also highlighted that Germany, so far, has delivered a total of 32 Gepard or Cheetah tanks to Ukraine to strengthen its defence capabilities against Russian drones.

Pistorius added: “We will now immediately resume our own production at Rheinmetall for cheetah ammunition.”