US Co-operation To Strengthen Ukraine Defense Industrial Base

The White House announced a set of new actions to strengthen co-operation and co-production between the United States and Ukraine’s Defense Industrial Bases.

The announcement followed the U.S.-Ukraine Defense Industrial Base Conference at the Department of Commerce in Washington, D.C., Wednesday. Around 350 U.S., Ukrainian, and European industry and government representatives attended the conference to focus on significantly increasing weapons production to support Ukraine’s fight against Russian attacks, and strengthen Ukraine’s long term self-defense.

The White House said U.S. and Ukrainian governments together seek to advance a robust and self-reliant Ukrainian defense industrial base that provides materiel for urgent military needs, and contributes to Ukraine’s long-term security and economic success. The conference focused on first steps: institutionalizing relationships, processes, and dialogue between industry and government partners.

Working with Congress, the Department of State plans to send an advisor to the Ministry of Strategic Industries of Ukraine to support and accelerate Ukraine’s transition to an interoperable military force, combat corruption, and attract foreign investment in critical industries.

The U.S. has established an inter-agency team, comprising representatives from the Departments of State, Defense, and Commerce, that will support industry partners and Ukrainian counterparts who seek guidance on potential deals, and export requirements for Ukraine’s defense industry.

The Department of Defense, Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, and Ministry for Strategic Industries of Ukraine signed a Statement of Intent on Co-production and Technical Data Exchange, which will work to address the urgent operational needs of the Ukrainian Forces.

The Statement of Intent increases cooperation between the United States and Ukraine, and will facilitate the movement of investment deals more quickly through systems, according to the White House.

These initial deliverables will not only expand U.S.-Ukraine cooperation and provide Ukraine with the capabilities it needs to be successful on the battlefield in the short-term, but will support Ukraine’s long-term economic recovery and defense, it said in a statement.

Even as the Biden administration moves in full swing with executive actions to strengthen Ukraine’s defense capabilities, Republicans defeated a foreign aid Bill for Ukraine in the Senate by 51 to 49 votes in protest against the package’s lack of changes to the government’s border and immigration policy.

Out of the $110 billion foreign assistance package for Ukraine, Israel and Gaza, $61 billion was earmarked for Ukraine.

“The stakes are too high and the consequences too grave to allow a minority in Congress to hold Ukraine funding hostage over any unrelated issue,” National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said in response to blocking President Biden’s National Security Supplemental Request.

With funds to arm Ukraine nearly exhausted, the United States announced a new package of weapons and equipment to Ukraine.

The $175 million package, which uses the limited resources that remain available to help Ukraine, includes air defense munitions, additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rockets Systems, artillery ammunition, High-speed Anti-Radiation Missiles, and anti-armor missiles.

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