Armin Papperger, CEO of Rheinmetall AG, speaks during the company's annual results conference in Duesseldorf, Germany, on March 17.
Armin Papperger, CEO of Rheinmetall AG, speaks in the course of the firm’s annual outcomes convention in Duesseldorf, Germany, on March 17. (Marius Becker/picture-alliance/dpa/AP)

The German arms producer Rheinmetall, who produces the Leopard battle tank amongst different heavy arms, is hoping to open a tank manufacturing unit in Ukraine, CEO Armin Papperger has advised a German newspaper.

Papperger, as quoted by the “Rheinische Submit” every day over the weekend, stated negotiations to construct such a plant are ongoing and a choice may come inside two months. 

A attainable plant would value about 200 million euros, or about $214 million, and about 400 tanks may very well be constructed yearly, Papperger advised “Rheinische Submit.” 

Air protection programs may very well be in place to guard such a facility, he stated.

Papperger added {that a} new model of the totally digitized battle tank “Panther” may very well be inbuilt Ukraine.

Some background: Rheinmetall is the largest arms producer in Germany with about 25,000 workers. 

In January, the arms producer stated it had 139 Leopards in inventory, however of these, solely 29 Leopard 2s can be combat-ready for supply within the spring of this yr. These 29 have already been theoretically pledged to different nations as a part of a tank swap.

The remainder of the inventory wanted to be ready over an extended time frame, in line with the corporate.

A Rheinmetall spokesperson advised CNN that of the remainder of the inventory — 88 Leopard 1 tanks — just a few may very well be deliverable in about 9 months, and the remaining in a yr.

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