Defense Minister Boris Pistorius wants a change at the top of the Bundeswehr Procurement Office. The SPD politician said after a meeting of the budget committee in the Bundestag that he had relieved the previous President Gabriele Korb of her duties the day before “with thanks for her work”. He entrusted Annette Lehnigk-Emden, currently Vice President of the Koblenz federal authority, with the task. Korb had taken over the office in 2018 under the CDU Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen.

“I’m very confident that with this decision we’ll get a new drive into the story, so to speak, which is necessary because we want and have to turn every acceleration screw that we can find,” said Pistorius. The aim is to become faster and more effective.

The Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Use of the Bundeswehr reports to the Ministry of Defense and is responsible for the troop’s multi-billion armament projects. The main task is to equip the Bundeswehr with powerful and safe equipment, but for years there has been criticism of long decision-making processes that often last for years. Again and again the costs got out of control.

Green light for new self-propelled howitzers

The Budget Committee of the Bundestag has meanwhile given the go-ahead for the purchase of 10 new Panzerhaubitz 2000. The order of the models from the tank builder Krauss-Maffei Wegmann is intended to close a gap that arose when the weapon system was handed over to the Ukraine. An option to purchase 18 more self-propelled howitzers is planned.

In addition, the budget committee provided 12 billion euros to support Ukraine with military material. Of this, up to 3.2 billion euros are intended for 2023 and a total of 8.8 billion euros by 2032. Around four billion euros are earmarked for the replacement of weapons and material that the Bundeswehr has given to Ukraine, said Pistorius. About eight billion will go to further support for Ukraine.

“Ukraine still needs considerable support in its defensive struggle after Russia’s illegal attack,” said the budget committee members of the traffic light coalition, Andreas Schwarz (SPD), Sebastian Schäfer (Greens) and Karsten Klein (FDP) together. “At the same time, funds are also being made available with which the procurement of armaments delivered directly from the Bundeswehr’s stocks can be financed. This means that the weakening of the Bundeswehr’s equipment can be quickly compensated for,” they explained.