New Defence Forces grenade launchers arrived in Estonia
The Estonian Centre for Defence Investment (ECDI), in cooperation with Latvia, ordered modern Carl-Gustaf M4 grenade launchers from the Swedish company Saab. With the first shipment of 314 weapons having arrived in Estonia.
‘Supplied by Sweden, the weapons will dramatically increase short-range anti-tank capabilities and replace the older model Carl-Gustaf M2, which is currently in use. The new grenade launchers will be used in parallel with the modification weapons M2 and M3, which are currently part of the military equipment being used by the Defence Forces,’ noted Ramil Lipp, Head of the Armaments at the ECDI.
‘I am also pleased to note that this is yet another successful example of a close cooperation project between neighbouring countries, as a result of which the anti-tank capability of not only Estonia, but the entire Baltic region, will increase,’ Lipp added.
The new type of grenade launcher can fire three types of armour penetrating grenades, three types of multi-purpose ammunition to destroy buildings and transport vehicles, neutralize live forces, while also being capable of firing two types of ammunition for use against enemy infantry, as well as smoke and illumination grenades.
‘The Carl-Gustaf grenade launcher is part of the standard armaments of the infantry division, providing units with strong anti-armour capabilities. This weapon is also used as a fire support device for the division, allowing it to effectively influence a dismounted enemy. Being lighter and shorter, the new weapon has greater accuracy and speed of use. The first to receive the new weapons are manoeuvring units, which are the main impact force of the Defence Forces,’ added Major Risto Pärtel, Chief of Ordnance at the Estonian Defence Forces.
The Carl-Gustaf M4 grenade launcher has the advantage of being lighter. In the case of the M2 models currently in use, its weight reached 14.2 kilograms, with the new weapons weighing only seven kilograms. In addition, the new weapons are 13 centimetres shorter.
“We are very satisfied to deliver our new Carl-Gustaf M4 to the Estonian Armed Forces. Its always a great achievement when a former Carl-Gustaf user once again selects our Ground Combat solutions. The Estonian Armed Forces will now have a robust and reliable weapon for decades ahead”, says Michael Höglund, head of business unit Ground Combat at Saab.
In June 2019, the Estonian Centre for Defence Investment signed a cooperation agreement with the Defence Resources Agency and Saab and last year Latvian partners were also involved in the procurement of new Carl-Gustav M4 grenade launchers and their ammunition.
Carl-Gustaf grenade launchers are used by several NATO members, including the United States. Estonia is one of the 14 countries that have ordered the latest Carl-Gustaf M4 in its modern modification.
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Established in 2017, the Estonian Centre for Defence Investment (ECDI) is an institution that deals with the acquisition of infrastructure and materials in the area of government of the Ministry of Defence. The purpose of the ECDI is to enable the Defence Forces to focus on their core activity, i.e. the performance of military tasks, and to create maximum defence capabilities for every euro invested. The ECDI organizes procurements for the Ministry of Defence, the Defence Forces and other government agencies, and manages and develops their real estate. In order to develop national defence, more than EUR 250 million in products and services are purchased each year, and more than EUR 70 million is spent maintaining infrastructure in working order.