Arizona Coalition to Aid Ukraine’s Reconstruction, Defense Industry

The Arizona Defense & Industry Coalition (AZDIC) has signed a memorandum of understanding to aid in Ukraine’s reconstruction and streamline the nation’s critical defense resources amid Russia’s invasion.

AZDIC consists of US-based defense and mining organizations as well as other industry partners for regional and national security projects.

The group addresses elements that impact the defense landscape, such as supply chain disruption, staffing shortages, and infrastructure upgrades.

For the partnership with Ukraine, AZDIC will facilitate the establishment of joint venture opportunities between Ukrainian and US defense companies interested in locating their production facilities in the country.

Finding ‘Actionable Solutions’

The agreement was signed between Ukrainian Strategic Industries Minister Oleksandr Kamyshin and AZDIC President Lynndy Smith at the Embassy of Ukraine in Washington, DC.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy was present during the event to oversee the signing.

“With AZDIC’s unmatched network of over 1,200 defense contractors and non-defense companies in Arizona, we knew we were in a unique position to help find actionable solutions for Ukraine,” Smith said.

“We appreciate Ukraine’s enduring partnership, and we look forward to supporting their cause through Arizona’s defense connections.”

Kamyshin also honored the AZDIC’s “steadfast commitment” to Ukraine as the country defends against Moscow’s attacks.

“AZDIC’s dedication and role in facilitating conversations with essential defense technologies will not only ensure our success in the war but also contribute significantly to our long-term resilience and progress.”

A man rides his bicycle in front of residential buildings damaged in yesterday's shelling in the city of Chernihiv
A man rides his bicycle in front of residential buildings damaged in shelling in the city of Chernihiv. Photo: AFP

Future Projects

The memorandum builds on a delegation meeting in June for Rebuild Ukraine Reconstruction, an ongoing international financial support program to reconstruct the country once Russian aggression ceases.

Through this event, AZDIC identified solutions supporting the government’s current needs for defense, weapons and equipment, and restoration.

“We have worked diligently to identify companies and universities in Arizona that want to assist our partners in Ukraine,” AZDIC Advisory Board Member Rick Stilgenbauer said.

“Clearly we have demonstrated that Arizona strongly supports Ukraine and has a strong desire to begin this work immediately.”

AZDIC is working on its second series of proposals for the country and will support Ukrainian pilots to train on F-16 Fighting Falcon supersonic combat jets at Morris Air National Guard Base in Tucson.

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