Minister Supports FMV-decision

The Swedish Government does not intend to go against the recommendation of its Defence Material Administration (FMV) to buy armoured vehicles from Finland instead of from Sweden. If the court finds nothing wrong with how the bidding process has been conducted, the Government will go with the FMV-decision. Defence Minister Sten Tolgfors told Swedish Radio: "These kinds of deals should not be politicised, there has to be rational criteria that decides which vehicle wins."

As Radio Sweden has previously reported, there has been a lot of criticism against the Swedish Defence Material Administration (FMV) decision to recommend the Government to buy 113 armoured vehicles not from the Swedish-based manufacturer BAE Systems Hägglunds, but from its Finnish competitor Patria.

The critics say it is in Sweden's national interest to keep the military technology competence within the country. They also point out that the Swedish state already has invested heavily in developing the Hägglunds vehicle and claim that this would be the cheaper option in the longer run.

Hägglunds for its part has filed a lawsuit against FMV for violating the rules for public bidding. The court is expected to reach a decision some time next week.

The company currently employs 1000 people in Örnsköldsvik, and 320 of them have told they will have to go, after the company lost the bidding process.