NewsPutin's shell game: Soaring artillery costs escalate Ukrainian conflict

Putin's shell game: Soaring artillery costs escalate Ukrainian conflict

A Ukrainian artilleryman holding an M549A1 shell.
A Ukrainian artilleryman holding an M549A1 shell.
Images source: © X | Ukraine Weapons Tracker
ed. PRC

2 July 2024 16:16

Artillery shells have become a key weapon in the war in Ukraine. Putin's invasion has shifted the defence industry onto a different track and drastically increased prices. Today, one shell costs as much as an older car, calculates the Slovak daily Aktuality.

The Russian war machine imposed a new production pace for weapons, particularly crucial shells, on the front in Ukraine. The war has drastically increased their production cost, writes the Slovak daily "Aktuality".

In March, the EU launched a programme to increase ammunition production capacity to 2 million shells annually by the end of 2025. It allocated €500 million for this purpose. However, according to estimates to the Slovak Daily, to effectively support Ukraine and its Western allies and break the invaders' offensive, they will need to spend an additional €800 billion.

The prices of all types of ammunition have increased. One shell can cost as much as an older car, emphasises "Aktuality." The price of an 82 mm mortar shell increased from €70 to €450. The price of a 152 mm artillery shell, also used by Russian armed forces, increased from €1200 to €5700, and 122 mm tank ammunition increased from €5991 to €7400. Missiles for the Grad launcher increased from €900 to €6000, which is calculated daily.

As we wrote on, calculations by Bain & Company indicate that the cost of producing artillery shells incurred by the West is four times higher than in Russia.

Ukraine's minimum requirement is one million shells of 155 mm calibre annually and another million of other calibres: 105 mm or Russian 122 mm, 152 mm, estimated Jacek Tarociński, an analyst with the security and defence team at the Centre for Eastern Studies, in an interview with

For two years of the war, the West helped to meet these minimum needs. If Ukraine is to take the initiative, launch an offensive, and reclaim territory, it must build reserves, and these needs will double or even triple.

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