WARSAW, Poland — Romania plans to buy a battalion’s worth of Abrams tanks from the United States, with a request to approve the acquisition expected to be sent shortly to the Romanian parliament, according to Maj. Gen. Teodor Incicaș, the head of the armaments directorate at the country’s Ministry of Defense.

Incicaș said in an interview with Observatorul Militar, a podcast produced by the ministry, that the tank type was selected after the General Staff of the Romanian Land Forces decided it was best suited to strengthen the service’s combat punch.

The military official did not disclose the variant and number of tanks that are to be purchased and the estimated delivery schedule. Local media reported that Bucharest could acquire as many as 54 units. The Abrams is expected to replace some of Romania’s outdated Soviet-times tanks.

The latest announcement comes as Romania and other Eastern European allies are accelerating their defense acquisitions in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The planned procurement could make Romania the second operator of the U.S.-made tank in Eastern Europe after Poland’s government signed a deal worth about $4.75 billion to purchase 250 M1A2 Abrams SEPv3 tanks in April 2022. Deliveries began last year. In addition to that order, in January 2023, the Polish Ministry of National Defence inked a second contract, valued at some $1.4 billion, to acquire 116 used M1A1 Abrams from the U.S., with deliveries scheduled to begin this year.

Jaroslaw Adamowski is the Poland correspondent for Defense News.

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