The Irish Defence Forces will spend 200 million euros ($201 million) to procure new radars to monitor foreign military aircraft in Irish airspace.
According to a report by Irish Mirror, the Cabinet is expected to sign an acquisition request from Defence Minister Simon Coveney for the so-called primary radars this week.
The move would address the lack of an aircraft detection system in the European nation, since Ireland has no way of knowing if foreign fighters jets or bombers are entering its air defense zone.
The country currently operates civilian radar, which cannot track military planes that do not use a transponder.
Although no specific details about the new radar have been disclosed, the report indicates that they will be “military-grade” and can track any aircraft.
“It is time to close the major hole in our defenses,” the source told Irish Mirror.
The acquisition of new radars for the Irish Defence Forces is part of a targeted major increase in military spending to counter emerging threats.
Sources revealed that the defense ministry will ask the Cabinet to approve a 1.5-billion-euro ($1.51 billion) budget, 500 million euros ($502 million) more than the previous allocation.
The increase will be allotted to pay more troops and procure more modern equipment to bolster the country’s defense capabilities.
Earlier this year, it was reported that Ireland’s defense forces will spend 566 million euros ($639 million) on new military equipment, including two new C-295 maritime patrol planes.
The country was also advised to establish a well-resourced military cyber command that can deter online attacks against the state.