Industry on show at UN peacekeeping technology symposium

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Defence companies are out in force at the sixth United Nations Partnership for Technology in Peacekeeping Symposium (6PTPS) that opened in Pretoria on Tuesday, and are gearing up for the UN Procurement Summit on Friday.

Defence and Military Veterans Ministers Thandi Modise opened the Symposium at the CSIR International Convention Centre on 21 June, and also toured the exhibition hall where she interacted with members of industry.

Ultimate Aviation dominated the display hall with its Bell 412 helicopter on display – this had to be disassembled, brought in by truck and reassembled. The company air specialises in cargo and passenger air transport in remote environments including combat zones, humanitarian aid areas and disaster relief sectors. It has seen a huge rise in business activity since the Covid-19 pandemic started.

Reutech Communications brought a Land Rover fitted with various radios and electronic systems, but was also showcasing its growing range of capabilities, which are being further expanded by the acquisition of Etion Create. Products and services the company offers include turrets, fuzes, radios, cryptographic products, radars, and electronic component manufacturing. Reutech is currently supplying radars, communications systems and remotely operated turrets to the SA Navy under Projects Biro and Hotel.

DCD Protected Mobility displayed models of its armoured vehicles, including its Husky route clearance vehicle and Springbuck armoured personnel carrier.

Other exhibitors included Imperial Armour (body armour and protective clothing); state defence material acquisition agency Armscor; Twiga (armoured personnel carriers, military boats etc.), Rheinmetall Denel Munition (small, medium and large calibre ammunition), the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR); ECM Technologies; Aztec (blast-mitigating seats, fuel tanks, ceramic armour, aerospace and defence batteries, ground power units etc.); Global Command and Control Technologies (simulation and training and command and control systems); Chieftain Africa (trailers); and Redeployable Camp Systems (tents and field accommodation).

Namibia’s Sat-Com was the only foreign company to exhibit, displaying some of its new radios, including the Hammerhead range. The company is working on multiple new projects, including a handheld VHF Lynx radio, vehicle intercom, and Hornet mesh networking radio.

The diamond sponsor of the exhibition, the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency, was also present in showing United Nations and other delegates what South Africa has to offer.

The exhibition is attached to the 6th International United Nations Partnership for Technology in Peacekeeping Symposium, which runs from 21 to 24 June. This is covering a range of topics relevant to peacekeepers, from protection and training to information-driven peace operations and eco-responsibility.

On 24 June the CSIR will also host a UN Procurement Summit, which will examine what the UN is looking for in a supplier, and how companies can best supply the UN. Key speakers are Atul Khare, Under-Secretary General for Operational Support UN Department of Operational Support, and Christian Francis Saunders, Assistant Secretary-General for Supply Chain Management.

Some of the topics under discussion at the Summit will cover doing business with the United Nations, the tender process, tips to win a tender, and aviation requirements.

To register to attend the UN Procurement Summit 2022, click here.