WARSAW, Poland — The Polish Ministry of Economic Development has announced the end of negotiations over a potential offset deal with Airbus Helicopters, indicating that the Ministry of Defence will not purchase Caracal military transport helos for the country's military.
"Poland considers the negotiations with Airbus Helicopters on an offset agreement related to the contract to purchase multi-purpose helicopters to be terminated. The contractor did not present an offset agreement that would sufficiently secure the economic interest and security of the Polish state," the Development Ministry said in a statement.
The statement said the procurement was estimated to be worth about 13.5 billion zloty (US $3.5 billion).
"The value of a proposed offset agreement should total at least this amount," the Development Ministry said.
The latest move indicates that Poland will most likely revise the previous cabinet’s decision from April 2015 to award a deal for 70 Caracals to Airbus Helicopters.
The Defence Ministry aims to hand the largest possible share of procurements to companies that produce their gear in Poland, and both companies own production facilities here. Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz has said that the ministry is considering the purchase of Black Hawk and AW149 helos from Lockheed Martin and Leonardo, respectively. Lockheed Martin’s subsidiary PZL Mielec makes the Black Hawk, while Leonardo’s PZL Swidnik offshoot produces the AW149.
The Development Ministry said that the government’s priority is to "guarantee the security of the state and ensure sufficient conditions for the development of the Polish defense industry."
Macierewicz is expected in November to present the priorities of Poland’s updated Technical Modernization Plan for the Polish Armed Forces to the parliament's National Defense Committee.