The unique structure of the Support Partnership (SP) in the NSPA provides a tried and tested legal framework that enables two or more nations to pursue common logistical support goals within the national spectrum of capabilities. The nations provide direct leadership and guidance, while the NSPA provides the assistance requested by the nations.
The Netherlands, Germany, Lithuania and the United Kingdom are members of the Boxer Support Partnership and benefit from the cooperative support of their Boxer fleets during use. A dedicated team of 20 NSPA experts in the Boxer System Management Group provides this support. They are the competence center for life cycle management and integrated logistics support for the boxers.
The Band of Time - a dedicated Boxer Support partnership
In 2013, the Netherlands and Germany established a first boxer support structure at the NSPA. Both nations acquired their systems through the OCCAR and decided to set up a cooperative support structure with the NSPA to support their boxer fleets. In 2018, Lithuania joined the support partnership, ensuring a smooth transition from production to in-service support and allowing Lithuania to benefit immediately from the support of the NSPA. In addition to the technical and logistical support, the NSPA also supplied the spike missiles and ammunition for the weapon systems mounted on the Lithuanian boxer vehicles.
In January 2020, the United Kingdom joined the Boxer Support Partnership. It will ensure that by the time the first vehicles go into service it will have a capable support structure that can be adapted to the UK's growing needs. At the same time, the current partner nations benefit from the shared use of resources and one-off costs while at the same time taking advantage of similarities and quantity advantages.
Currently, the Boxer Support Partnership has four member nations with an NSPA structure to support this modern fleet, which will grow to 1,200 armored vehicles over the next few years.
Current Boxer fleet support portfolio
The NSPA's program office for air and land combat systems (NSPA - Air & Land-
Combat Systems) provides procurement and lifecycle support solutions for twelve multinational support partnerships. These include missiles (AMRAAM, Sidewinder, HARM / AARGM, TOW / ITAS, SPIKE and Stinger), artillery systems (MLRS and the PzH 2000), night vision and optoelectronic equipment, tactical unmanned aerial systems and armored combat vehicles, including Leopard, Dingo, light armored vehicles (LAV) as well as the boxer.
The current Boxer fleet support portfolio includes technical and project support from experienced project managers, engineers and technicians. This offers those involved transparency and a structured framework for project control in order to achieve project results promptly and cost-effectively. Brokerage and inventory management with more than 1,100 individual items - selected by nationality - are held on site in Luxembourg to ensure prompt availability of spare parts. In addition, spare parts are available through existing framework agreements or competitive procurement.
The Boxer family has quickly become the flagship of the NSPA's Land Weapon Systems Support Partnership. Its success lies in the cooperation between all important actors such as OCCAR, ARTEC and the nations. The Boxer Support Partnership balances the interests of nations to achieve its goals. The NSPA expects that new boxer user nations will benefit from the established structure of the boxer support partnership.
The robust support structure currently being expanded to support a joint fleet of 1,200 vehicles, the ongoing collaboration and new initiatives with industry and the OCCAR, and the available in-house expertise all point to the ongoing success of the Boxer support partnership.
Robert Elvish is Program Manager, Program Office for Air and Land Combat Systems at NSPA.