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France ramps up artillery production for Ukraine

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France’s Minister of Defense, Sébastien Lecornu, has announced a substantial order for the production of dozens of Caesar self-propelled artillery systems.

According to Militarnyi, the decision was revealed to Le Parisien, showcasing France’s commitment to reinforcing Ukraine’s defense.

“We are initiating a significant step in artillery, commissioning the manufacturing of Caesar howitzers by Nexter in Bourges and Roanne. Our initiative aims to produce 78 Caesar systems in 2024,” stated Minister Lecornu.

Emphasizing a collaborative effort, the minister expressed France’s desire to encourage European nations and allies to contribute to this endeavor. Ukraine, having already embraced the initiative, made its own investment by independently procuring six Caesar systems to kickstart the project.

“Ukraine is ready to contribute a portion of its resources to the project, having recently acquired six Caesar systems at its own expense to initiate the initiative,” he added.

Le Dornu assured that the accelerated production pace would lead to the delivery of nearly 80 artillery systems in 2024. This efficiency is made possible by reducing the production cycle for one self-propelled artillery unit from 30 to 15 months. Additionally, Nexter, the manufacturer, has strategically built necessary reserves, and its workforce is highly mobilized.

The Franco-German company KNDS, which includes Nexter, anticipates a surge in demand for its flagship artillery system. The manufacturer has reported a reorganization of its production lines, expecting an increase in output from the current six howitzers to eight per month by 2024

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