AM General, Egypt sign partnership agreement

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AM General and the Egyptian Ministry of Military Production have signed a partnership agreement that could see HMMWVs being built in the North African country.

AM General announced on 22 June that it had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Egyptian Ministry of Military Production (MoMP) to facilitate Egypt’s development of its domestic military automobile industry. The long-term partnership would establish a phased approach to investigate ways in which AM General can collaborate with the MoMP to develop and build tactical vehicles in-country.

“Today’s signing ceremony further solidifies our long-standing relationship with the government of Egypt,” said Andy Hove, AM General President and CEO. “We look forward to applying our manufacturing and design expertise to help grow the Egyptian automotive industry.”

AM General said the collaboration will help facilitate the development of a domestic military automobile industry in Egypt. Together with the MoMP, the company will study the feasibility of developing an in-country assembly and manufacturing capability which will enable the MoMP to replace and/or supplement its existing HMMWV fleet. The study will result in the development of a detailed plan to move forward with partnership agreement.

US Ambassador to Cairo Jonathan Cohen and the Minister of Military Production Mohamed Morsi witnessed the signing ceremony.

Morsi said during the ceremony that the deal comes as part of the ministry’s efforts to support local manufacturing and promote the use of modern technologies domestically, in addition to exchanging expertise with global companies in various fields.

The Egyptian military already operates the HMMWV (High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle), having acquired 100 M114 up-armoured HMMWVs in 2003/4.

The agreement with AM General is part of a broader initiative to develop more domestic military manufacturing in Egypt. Egypt is locally assembling warships and M1 Abrams main battle tanks, amongst others, and is developing its own range of Temsah (Crocodile) armoured personnel carriers (APCs). In February, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi inspected locally developed armoured vehicles, including the new Temsah 5 scout/utility vehicle.

The Temsah is Egypt’s flagship locally produced armoured vehicle, which is available in a wide array of variants including a 6×6 personnel carrier, 4×4 troop transport etc. Its V-hull gives landmine protection while the hull is protected against 7.62 mm armour piercing rounds and shell splinters. It is built by the Kader Factory for Developed Industries and was first unveiled in 2016. Since then, several variants have emerged.

Other locally manufactured armoured vehicles include the International Marathon United Technology Group (IMUT) ST-100 and ST-500. Development of these 4×4 vehicles was done in conjunction with the Ministry of Military Production.

On the heavier side, Egypt is working on the locally manufactured Sinai-200 tracked infantry fighting vehicle. This appears to be an upgrade of the Russian BMP series of IFVs. It is armoured to STANAG 4569 Level 4B protection against landmines and improvised explosive devices and is fitted with a 12.7 mm remotely operated weapon station and counter-RPG net armour.

It has been reported that Egypt will begin mass production of the ST-500 and Sinai-200 this year.

President al-Sisi inspected the new vehicle in early 2020 at the opening of the Military Factory 300. At the time, Minister of State for Military Production Mohamed al-Assar revealed a plan to develop local arms and ammunition production, with a total investment of about 7.5 billion Egyptian pounds ($479 million). “The plan includes the modernization and addition of 84 production lines. After its implementation, Egypt will not import a single round of ammunition. Egypt wants Egyptians to manufacture their own weapons and the plan needs three years to be properly implemented,” al-Assar said.