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Zelenskyy meets with leaders of US defense companies

President Zelensky met with US defense industry leaders during his US visit, focusing on a European defense hub in Ukraine, military production, and investment from American partners.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky (in the center) meeting with executives of U.S. defense companies. Photo: president.gov.ua
As part of his visit to the United States, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky met with executives of US defense companies late on 11 December.

“I had an important and fruitful meeting with leaders of US defense companies. I am grateful to all the workers, engineers, all those who work at American defense companies and partners who produce weapons that help safeguard Ukrainians and help our army defend the country. These are the people who have done a lot for Ukraine,” Zelensky said in a post on Telegram.

Zelenskyy started his official visit to the United States by meeting with US Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Charles Brown at the National Defence University.

Then, the Ukrainian President delivered a speech at the National Defense University of the United States, met with IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, then with the President of the World Bank, Ajay Banga.

Zelenskyy also had a meeting with representatives of US think tanks to discuss how to maintain American support for Ukraine and attention to our country in the face of other global challenges.

Ukrinform reports that according to the Ukrainian President’s Office, Zelenskyy’s meeting with the executives of the US defense companies was held at Ukraine House in Washington, DC, and was attended by:

  • BAE Systems President Tom Arseneault,
  • Day & Zimmermann Chair and CEO Harold Yoh,
  • Boeing President Theodore Colbert,
  • CEO of Sierra Nevada Corporation Fatih Ozmen,
  • Northrop Grumman Vice President Stephen O’Bryan,
  • RTX Vice President Jeff Shockey,
  • Lockheed Martin Vice President Raymond Piselli,
  • General Dynamics Vice President Mark Roualet,
  • D&M Holding CEO Daniel Powers,
  • AeroVironment Vice President Charles Dean.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy discussed the concept of creating a European defense hub, emphasizing Ukraine as the ideal location due to its extensive combat experience. He pledged Ukraine’s commitment to expeditiously make essential decisions, streamline processes, and initiate procurement. The President stressed the urgency, stating,

“We are ready to act quickly, and we have already started to do so, since we have no other way to change the system as we are at war,” the President noted.

Minister: Ukraine to partner with US firms to produce 155mm shells domestically

Zelensky stressed Ukraine’s readiness to boost military production with support from powerful companies, particularly for joint artillery, air defense, and missile systems. He also mentioned plans to invite American partners to invest in Ukrainian defense firms, benefitting all parties.

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