NATO Signs $1.2B Aid Contract to Assist Ukraine

( – While the US continues to debate sending more aid to Ukraine tied to a spending package that includes funding for border security and Israel, NATO is getting a move on sending more weapons for the war effort against Russia.

On Tuesday, Jan. 23, NATO signed a massive $1.2 billion arms contract to produce a large shipment of artillery rounds for Ukraine’s allies supplying ammunition to the nation during its ongoing war with Russia. The contract will replenish artillery stockpiles for NATO members who’ve depleted their reserves helping Ukraine.

According to the support and procurement agency of NATO, the contract will allow member nations to purchase up to 220,000 rounds of ammunition, specifically the most sought-after 155-millimeter shells. The contract also allows members to backfill their country’s arsenals and give more ammo to Ukraine.

Jens Stoltenberg, the Secretary General of NATO, said the contract is “important” for defending NATO territory, building up member nations artillery stocks, and continuing “to support Ukraine.” Stoltenberg said that Putin must not be allowed to obtain victory over Ukraine, which “would be a tragedy” for the people there and “dangerous” for the rest of the world.

Estimates from the European Union (EU) show that Ukraine shot anywhere from 4,000 to 7,000 artillery shells a day in the Summer of 2023, while Russia fired over 20,000 per diem into Ukraine’s territory. To match the firepower of Russia’s weapons industry, which far outweighs its own, Ukraine needs the help of allied nations.

Although the new contract will ensure more weapons head their way, NATO members will have to wait from two to three years for the orders to be delivered. The EU initially planned to produce at least a million rounds for the Ukraine war effort but has fallen short of that promise. However, the defense industry expects to reach an annual production of one million shells by the end of 2024.

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