The Defence Forces are to receive 120 new 4x4 vehicles at a cost of almost €25 million to the State.
The vehicles are used for transporting troops, as well as artillery gun-towing and for the carriage of stores. They can be deployed for activities during flooding, extreme weather events, or other emergencies.
Minister with Responsibility for Defence Paul Kehoe awarded the contract for the provision of vehicles to Westward Scania, which is a company based in Strokestown, Co Roscommon. The cost of the contract will be €24.6 million including VAT.
They will replace the current fleet which entered service between 1998 and 2003.
A spokesman for PDforra, the organisation representing rank-and-file Defence Forces members, said: “They are badly needed and we welcome the upgrade and equipment.”
Mr Kehoe, who has been criticised in recent years over staffing levels in the Defence Forces, said the Government was committed to ensuring the Defence Forces are properly equipped.
The award of the contract follows an open tender competition initiated in 2019 and concluded earlier this year. The first vehicles are scheduled for delivery this year with delivery of all 120 vehicles concluding by 2023.