Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has announced plans to enhance the country’s domestic defense industry by partnering with Western weapons manufacturers. The goal is to bolster supplies for Ukraine’s ongoing counteroffensive against Russia. Zelenskyy desires to transform Ukraine into a major military hub capable of producing and repairing military equipment and weapons. Immediate priorities include air defense and de-mining, as well as the domestic production of missiles, drones, and artillery ammunition.
To achieve this, Ukrainian producers have already signed approximately 20 agreements with foreign partners for joint production, technology exchange, and component supply. The companies involved, however, have not been identified. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has expressed support for the initiative, emphasizing the importance of industry in defense capabilities.
Ukraine’s allies have already provided significant financial and military assistance, but Ukrainian officials believe that developing the domestic defense industry can further boost the country’s economy, which suffered a major contraction due to the war. Leading Western arms manufacturers, including Rheinmetall from Germany and BAE Systems from the United Kingdom, have already announced plans to collaborate with Ukrainian producers. To attract Western defense investment, Ukraine will introduce new incentives and establish a special fund using dividends from state defense resources and profits from the sale of confiscated Russian assets. The goal is to create a mutually beneficial partnership and develop world-class military products, as stated by Zelenskyy and Defense Minister Rustem Umerov.