The Polish government has received a proposal from the team developing the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) that includes the production of 16 systems with plans to share the work with Polish industry.
The MEADS International proposal -- submitted at the request of the Polish government on Monday for its "Wisla" program -- officially puts Raytheon and Lockheed Martin back into a head-to-head competition to provide the country the air-and-missile defense solution it’s been pursuing for roughly four years.
“MEADS represents the most affordable and the quickest path to the capabilities Poland requires,” a statement issued Tuesday by the industry team states.
Initially in the running for the Wisla program were Raytheon’s Patriot, the MEADS system, Israel’s David’s Sling and an offering from a French consortium. However, in an effort to buy something more quickly, Poland eliminated the developmental systems – MEADS and David’s Sling – from the competition.
Poland has gone back and forth with its procurement decision since it expedited its plans to buy a new AMD system several years ago due to fears of Russian aggression in the region.
And as time has passed, the MEADS system is closer to moving from a developmental program to a fielded system. Germany is expected to finalize a contract to proceed in developing and building MEADS in 2017, preferably -- for the MEADS team -- before an election in the country could complicate the deal.