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Russian shell production three times greater than of Ukraine's allies

by Dominic Culverwell May 26, 2024 3:12 PM 2 min read
A Ukrainian soldier carries the 155mm shell for M777 artillery at their artillery position in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on Aug. 6, 2023. (Diego Herrera Carcedo/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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Russia is managing to produce artillery shells at triple the speed of Ukraine’s allies for a quarter of the price, Sky News reported on May 26, referencing analysis from management consulting firm Bain & Company.

Using publicly available data, the firm claims that Russian factories can produce or refurbish 4.5 million 152 mm shells this year for $1,000 per round. European countries and the U.S. are only expected to produce 1.3 million 155 mm shells combined, at an average cost of $4,000 per unit.

Slow artillery production has hindered Ukraine’s progress on the battlefield. Soldiers claim that for every round they fire, Russia launches around five back.

A Senior Lieutenant with the 57th Brigade in Kharkiv Oblast, where Russia launched a new offensive on May 10, told Sky News that Ukraine urgently needs more supplies. However, he added that Ukrainian soldiers are making every round count and are able to destroy a target with one, two, or three shells.

An ammunition shortage has long been a cause for concern in Ukraine but has escalated this year. The EU failed to deliver on its promise to produce 1 million artillery shells between March 2023 and 2024 while disputes in Washington led to a severe delay in a $61 billion aid package.

Several countries have backed a Czech-led initiative to procure 800,000 shells for Ukraine proposed in February this year. In March, the EU allocated 500 million euros ($544 million) to bolster the EU's ammunition production capacity to 2 million shells per year by the end of 2025.

Ukraine will also begin domestic production of NATO-standard 155 mm shells in the second half of 2024, at the earliest, according to the Washington Post.

Inside the Swedish ammunition plant at the forefront of Europe’s push to ramp up shell production
KARLSKOGA, SWEDEN – In a nondescript industrial area nestled among a forest of Swedish pine, a continent-wide effort to ramp up defense production is playing out in real time. A modest, one-story building is home to a seemingly endless ceiling-mounted rail — essentially an upside-down conveyor belt…
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