Canada purchases from US one NASAMS air defense missile system for Ukraine

On January 10, 2023, Canadian Defence Minister Anita Anand announced that Canada is purchasing a National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS) and associated munitions from the United States to donate to Ukraine. This high-priority donation is the first Canadian donation of an air defense system to Ukraine.
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Finnish army NASAMS II surface-to-air missile launcher on Sisu E13TP 8×8 truck. (Picture source Wikimedia)

Canada’s NASAMS donation will help Ukraine strengthen its air defense systems against destructive air attacks on military sites, civilian critical infrastructure, and population centers. Canada is the second country to provide Ukraine with NASAMS, after the United States which has already delivered to Ukraine four NASAMS air defense missile systems. 

The NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System) is a medium to long-range air defense missile system designed and manufactured by the Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace teamed up with Raytheon from the United States for the missile. The system is designed to engage and destroy drones, missiles, and aircraft with a high success rate.

NASAMS is in service with eleven countries as of 2022 and has been integrated into the U.S. National Capital Region’s air defense system since 2005. In addition to the U.S., Australia, Chile, Finland, Indonesia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Spain, Qatar, and now Ukraine have chosen the NASAMS to protect national airspace defense and critical assets. The NASAMS missile can engage aerial targets at a maximum altitude of 15 kilometers and a maximum range of 33 kilometers.

This donation, valued at approximately $406 million, comes from the additional $500 million in military aid to Ukraine that Prime Minister Trudeau announced on November 14, 2022. The donation builds on Canada’s longstanding military support to Ukraine, including our training mission – Operation UNIFIER, donations of armored vehicles, artillery, drone cameras, and winter clothing, and ongoing efforts by the Royal Canadian Air Force to transport Ukraine-bound military aid donated by Canada, Allies, and partners.

Canada remains committed to providing Ukraine with the military aid that it needs to defend itself from Russia’s illegal and unjustifiable attacks, including intensifying Russian air raids.