Defence Industry Bulletin, January 2017 (Issue #12)
If there is one thing of which 2016 cannot be accused, it is of being a ‘slow year’. Its surprises, disappointments, celebrations and tragedies have spared few from bruises, and if there is one thing of which we can all agree it’s that we hope this year will at least be more positive and productive.
The biggest factors for the defence world are of course the political ones. Recent elections, referendums and impeachments have complicated the face of both East and West. Yes, the Brexit scenario that ‘no one’ predicted remains headline news as Britain and the EU attempt to fathom their future together and apart at the same time, but internal politics in Austria, France, Italy and other European nations seem to be building their own disparate narratives.
Whatever the leanings of the governments within Europe – and indeed the United States – the threats to regional security do not simply disappear, and the hands of Islamist terrorism and Russian stealth-expansion continue to sow problems to which a collective response is – and will always be – needed. Politics aside, the defence industry must endeavour to continue its responsibilities of bringing the most advanced equipment to those who put their lives on the line to defend us.
As such, this issue will explore the latest developments and deals in the market. Our correspondent Georg Mader lifts the lid on a significant technology gap in Ukraine, while also digging for more information on Kenya’s inevitable combat aircraft procurement plans. Angus Batey debriefs us on Unmanned Warrior 2016 – with naval personnel assessing the latest in remote capabilities – and gets the scoop on the RAF’s plans for its Sentinel fleet. In addition, we also bring you the usual round-up of land, sea and air news, including some intriguing RFIs and modernisation plans...
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