Australia to participate in OCCAR Boxer Multi Role Armored Vehicle program
According to information published on January 25, 2022, by the OCCAR (Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d'Armement / Organization for Joint Armament Co-operation), a Framework Agreement that provides the legal mechanism for Australia’s participation in OCCAR defense equipment programs came into force on 25/01/2022. Australia is interested in a number of OCCAR Programs including the Tiger Helicopter, the Boxer Multi Role Armored Vehicle, and the Light Weight Torpedo programs.
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Australian Soldiers from the 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment (Queensland Mounted Infantry) in an Australian Army Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle conduct a battle run at Townsville Field Training Area, Queensland. (Picture source Australia DoD)
The OCCAR Director, Admiral Matteo Bisceglia stated: “The Framework Agreement with Australia highlights one of the Baden-Baden founding principles of OCCAR, namely that OCCAR programs are open to participation by non-OCCAR Nations on fair and open terms. The Agreement also confirms the belief of Nations in OCCAR’s capacities to manage complex cooperative programs.”
This Agreement will offer opportunities for Australia to collaborate on advanced defense technology with OCCAR’s Program Participating States and will facilitate greater Australian defense industry integration with European-based primes.
The Australian commitment is most welcome and a clear recognition of OCCAR’s capability in managing complex cooperative armaments programs. It strengthens OCCAR in its beliefs that cooperation at all international levels is the most appropriate road towards successfully achieving strategic objectives in the most economical way.
The Boxer is a German-Dutch multirole 8x8 wheeled armored fighting vehicle designed to accomplish a number of operations through the use of installable mission modules. It is produced by the ARTEC GmbH (Armored vehicle TEChnology) industrial group, and the program is being managed by OCCAR.
The acquisition of the Boxer armored vehicles is part of the LAND 400 Phase 2 (L400-2) concerning the Mounted Combat Reconnaissance Capability (MCRC). This capability seeks to meet the Australian Army’s land combat reconnaissance requirements. The Boxer will replace the Australian Light Armored Vehicle (ASLAV).
On 9 August 2018, the Australian Department of Defense established a contract, valued at $4.28 billion with Rheinmetall Defense Australia for the acquisition of 211 Boxer Combat Reconnaissance Vehicles (CRVs), 12 mission modules, and associated support systems. The vehicles are to be delivered in two blocks including Block I comprising 25 vehicles intended to provide an early deployable capability for the Australian Defense Force by December 20203 and Block II comprising 186 vehicles to be delivered between February 2022 and January 2027.