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HELSINKI — Forsvarsmateriell, Norway’s newly established defense material agency, is expected to procure military equipment and services for the Norwegian Armed Forces (NAF) amounting to around $1.9 billion in 2016. The agency will operate as a division of the Ministry of Defense (MoD).

The Norwegian government reached a final decision to reorganize the management and procurement of materials and services to the NAF in April 2015. Forsvarsmateriell will manage around 25 percent of the annual defense budget in Norway.

Under the government decision, certain procurement and resource management functions that were traditionally performed by the Norwegian Defense Logistics Organization (NDLO) were transferred to Forsvarsmateriell, which commenced operations in the first week of January 2016.

As part of the reorganization and outcome, the NDLO will retain responsibility for providing logistical support functions to the NAF.

"The primary mission and raison d'être of Forsvarsmateriell is to support the Armed Forces and the country's defense capability. Ultimately, this is about helping to deliver operational capability, as it is throughout the sector," said Ine Eriksen Søreide, Norway’s defense minister.

The reorganization and establishment of Forsvarsmateriell, said Søreide, aims to achieve a more efficient investment process capable of delivering improved continuity and a shorter completion time for procurement projects.

Headed by chief director Mette Sørfonden, Forsvarsmateriell’s organization will comprise some 1,300 staff, many of whom moved to the new agency from administrative positions at the NDLO.

Email: godwyer@defensenews.com.

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