Prague, Feb 14 (CTK) – The Czech military is to start buying new infantry fighting vehicles in 2019 and gradually acquire more than 200 of them for a total price of more than 50 billion crowns, Chief-of-Staff Josef Becvar said on Tuesday.

He said “industry days” will be held at some military training grounds at the beginning of the summer, at which the tender bidders will present their offers.

The leaders of the military and the Defence Ministry will want to see the vehicles during the ride and fire.

The military is to get further modern equipment for dozens of billions of crowns in the next months and years.

Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky said the ministry would like to sing contracts or submit projects to the government worth a total of 26 billion crowns.

The plans include the upgrade of 33 Dana self-propelled howitzers. The military is also to get 17 new guns with a calibre used in NATO, which have a longer firing range.

The military will buy fire control systems, which fit both old and new guns.

The soldiers will get 42 Titus armoured vehicles and another 86 lorries on the Tatra chassis this year. They will include tankers and rescue and mobile workshop vehicles for Pandur armoured personnel carriers.

The government is expected to approve the purchases of 12 multipurpose helicopters for the air force by the end of its mandate at the end of the year.

It has set aside six billion crowns for them, but the military says this will not be enough.