Rheinmetall to open ammo factory in Ukraine in joint project

By Thomson Reuters Feb 17, 2024 | 11:04 AM

BERLIN (Reuters) – German defence company Rheinmetall plans to open an ammunition factory in Ukraine as part of a joint venture with a Ukrainian partner, it said on Saturday.

Rheinmetall, one of the world’s biggest producers of artillery and tank shells, began ramping up production after Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine, which faces acute shortages of ammunition and whose troops have in recent days been forced to withdraw from the devastated eastern town of Avdiivka.

The German company signed a memorandum of understanding at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday to build and jointly operate the new factory with a Ukrainian partner, whom it did not name.

The factory in Ukraine will produce a six-digit number of 155mm calibre bullets per year, Rheinmetall said, but did not say when production would begin or where the facility would be located.

Rheinmetall will own 51% of the new company, with the remaining 49% share held by the Ukrainian partner.

The German company is already involved in a joint venture in Ukraine to service and repair Western weapons sent to help Kyiv fend off Russia. It also plans to build armoured vehicles in Ukraine.

(Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Matthias Williams and David Holmes)