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Ukraine is ramping up drone production to compensate for the shortage of shells: Havryliuk reveals details

Amid a shortage of shells, Ukraine is looking for ways to compensate

In the face of a shortage of artillery ammunition, Ukraine is looking for ways to compensate for it. In particular, the production of Ukrainian kamikaze drones is currently being ramped up.

Ukraine is also increasing its own production of ammunition of "virtually all nomenclatures" that were produced during the Soviet era. Deputy Defense Minister Ivan Havryliuk said this in an interview with BBC Ukraine.

The Ministry of Defense stated that there is a shortage of artillery shells and that it will continue. They decided to compensate for the lack of ammunition by increasing the production of kamikaze drones.

"As for artillery ammunition, this issue will continue to arise. Therefore, Ukraine decided to address these issues by creating a powerful UAV production facility," Havryliuk said.

He added that in parallel, Ukraine is also increasing its own production of ammunition "of almost all nomenclatures of the former USSR.

However, there is a problem here, as most of the systems that Western partners have provided to Ukraine use NATO calibers, primarily 155 mm. Therefore, Ukraine plans to jointly produce such shells on Ukrainian territory with Western companies.

"We cannot talk about producing a large number of 155-mm shells," Havryliuk stated.

However, he said that next year the Ukrainian industry is expected to reach the levels of shell production to "cover the difference between what is needed and the number of shells that partners can provide."

The problems with artillery shells are due to the fact that the Western industry was not ready to produce enough of them to fight a war like the one currently taking place in Ukraine.

Thus, the European Union promised to send Ukraine a million artillery shells by March 2024. However, after the promise began to be realized, it became clear that the EU was not meeting the stated deadline. Not long ago, it became known that only "480,000 have been delivered or are in the pipeline."

The United States, which has provided Ukraine with more than 2 million 155 mm shells during the full-scale Russian invasion, has also exhausted its stockpile and decided to provide the Ukrainian army with cluster munitions.

The Estonian Ministry of Defense estimates that Ukraine needs at least 200,000 shells per month. This will allow it to "maintain local firepower." With this intensity of use, the Western stockpiles, according to the Estonian military, will be exhausted in 2024.

The West is now trying to increase its capacity. However, it is far from catching up with the pace of replenishment of the Russian Federation, which, thanks to its own capacities and the help of a few partners like the DPRK, already receives 3.5 million shells a year. And experts predict that in 2024 this figure could increase by another million shells.

Earlier, a training flight of the Scythe drone was shown online. It is called the "Ukrainian Shahed". It is an inexpensive weapon of mass destruction with a declared range of 750 km and a payload of up to 43 kg. If the drone carries up to 70 kg, the range will be slightly reduced.

The defense forces have already received the first Scythe units. The manufacturer plans to produce about 500 of these drones per month.

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