Finland has selected IAI’s Gabriel anti-ship missile to replace its current MTO85M system. The acquisition of the Israeli missile system was approved by the Finnish defense minister Jussi Niinistö on July 5.
According to the Finnish defense ministry, the contract is worth €162 million, with a €193 million option. The purchase will include launchers, missiles, simulators, test equipment, spare parts, and training. The quantities of missiles to be purchased will not be made public, the ministry added. Deliveries will take place between the years 2019 and 2025.
The system, which will be known as SSM2020 in Finland, will be installed on Hamina-class missile boats and the new Squadron 2020 vessels, scheduled to begin construction in 2019.
IAI’s Gabriel was selected over four other systems offered, including Kongsberg’s NSM, MBDA’s Exocet, Boeing’s Harpoon and Saab’s RBS15. The ministry said the main selection criteria included acquisition costs and schedule, lifecycle costs and security of supply, and compatibility with existing infrastructure and defense systems.
“We are proud to welcome this first-of-its-kind deal in Europe on the sale of IAI’s surface-to-surface missile system to Finland,” said IAI CEO and President Joseph Weiss. “This contract is a first and strategic landmark for us in Europe and a significant breakthrough in our operations in this field. Finland’s government chose IAI after an in-depth review of multiple bidders. The selection process of IAI testifies to our technological and system-wide capabilities as the global leader in one of the most important missile categories.”