Baltic states mull joint air defence procurement

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The Baltic states — Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania — are planning to organise joint procurement programmes to beef up their air defence capabilities, the Prime Ministers of the three countries said following their meeting in the Latvian state capital Riga.

The Prime Ministers of the three Baltic states met on Friday.

Estonia’s Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said their talks focused on strengthening defence cooperation through joint purchases of air defence systems, Xinhua news agency reported.

Krisjanis Karins, Prime Minister of Latvia, recalled that the three countries are already cooperating on a major rocket artillery project. In the future, they may also cooperate on air defence.

Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte of Lithuania said the three countries’ decision to increase their defence spending provides proof that they seek mutually beneficial agreements.

“We, too, are ready to take steps towards joint purchases,” she said, explaining that making such purchases separately would be more expensive and would also create logistical problems.

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