Finland’s Ministry of Defence has announced it will exercise a 134-million-euro ($137 million) contract option to purchase additional K9 155 mm self-propelled anti-tank howitzers for the Finnish Army.
The option was approved by Finnish Defence Minister Antti Kaikkonen and the country’s Finance Committee on November 17.
“I am satisfied that the opportunity agreed in the procurement contract to buy these tank howitzers will now be redeemed in full,” Kaikkonen said.
“With this acquisition, we will significantly strengthen the strike capability of our ground forces.”
The new order follows a foreign military sale with the South Korean trade organization KOTRA in 2017.
The separate agreement includes 96 K9 Thunders, 10 of which have already been delivered to the Finnish Army.
According to the ministry, the anti-tank capability carries the advantage of “significantly improving the firepower of the army” by combining force protection, mobility, and firepower.
“As such, the self-propelled howitzer has turned out to be reliable and provided excellently validated use case experiences both relating to training persons liable for military service and conducting fires,” explained Col. Pertti Holma, Artillery Inspector for the Finnish Army Command.
K9 Howitzers in Poland
Earlier this year, Poland and South Korea signed a contract for the same howitzer variant to prepare Polish forces amidst the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The $5.76 billion contract includes 212 K9 Thunders and 180 K2 Black Panther tanks, with the first tranche delivered to Poland last October.
The acquisition is expected to be completed by 2026, according to the Polish Ministry of National Defence.