The Netherlands will deliver Ukraine two minehunters to help provide grain-laden ships with safe passage in the Black Sea.
Netherlands Minister of Defense Kajsa Ollongren announced last week that the country intends to supply Kyiv with two Alkmaar-class minehunters.
She said that the Netherlands would start delivering the vessels after receiving their replacements, starting in 2025.
She added that the Ukrainian crew would start training on the vessels in the second half of 2023.
To Facilitate Grain Export
The minehunters will help clear Russian sea mines in the Black Sea that hinder the safe passage of merchant ships carrying grain.
Ukraine was the world’s fifth largest wheat exporter in 2021, behind Russia, the US, Australia, and Canada.
Bridge Building, Drone Detection Systems
Ollongren said that the country would also deliver bridge-building and drone detection radar systems, without revealing the delivery timeline.
The M3 bridge and ferry systems would help Ukrainian forces quickly build pontoon bridges, allowing vehicles to cross over rivers.
The M3 and the drone detection systems would be directly purchased from the industry.
Meanwhile, the Netherlands has provided 1.2 billion euros ($1.29 billion) worth of military assistance to Ukraine since the war began, including self-propelled howitzers, Patriot launch systems, and tanks.
Vandaag heb ik in havenstad Odessa 🇺🇦 bekendgemaakt dat Nederland 2 mijnenjagers aan Oekraïne wil leveren. Dit jaar starten we samen met België de training van Oekraïense bemanning. Zo dragen we bij aan de maritieme veiligheid in de Zwarte Zee. https://t.co/im4VJT1oHV pic.twitter.com/a4fc4vvhUp
— Kajsa Ollongren (@DefensieMin) March 14, 2023