The results of the Serbian defense industry are becoming increasingly visible worldwide, confirmed by the company “Technical Overhaul Bratunac” (TRB), which plans to deliver the first two modernly equipped combat vehicles, “Vihor,” to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) military at the end of January.
Majority owner of TRB, Slavenko Ristić, stated for “Glas Srpske” that if the specifications for these combat vehicles are confirmed by the UAE, the plan is to deliver several hundred “Vihor” vehicles over the next four years.
He emphasized that these are light tactical vehicles, with a market price of around 500,000 euros, depending on the equipment, and they are not on a commercial platform.
Ristić mentioned that the production capacity is 50 vehicles per year, and the UAE military’s decision to purchase their vehicles is a fantastic reference for TRB. He highlighted the significance of selling to a country like the UAE, which can afford the best of the best.
The vehicles underwent a year-long testing phase in the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Srpska, where they passed all tests. They were also presented at the Belgrade Fair of Arms and Military Equipment “Partner 2023” in September before being offered internationally.
Due to the global situation and increased demand, the defense industry is booming, and TRB is inundated with orders from around the world. The company plans to introduce a new pistol called “Šejtan” by the end of the year, and several undisclosed projects are in progress.
Ristić mentioned that the Middle East, South and North Africa are their main markets, with increasing inquiries from South America and Colombia. The company is currently focused on specific projects such as the production of lighters, combat vehicles, ammunition production lines, and demining machines.
Despite their long-standing collaboration with Israel, they do not export weapons to Israel or sell their products to Ukraine to avoid adding fuel to conflicts. The company aims to stay neutral and operate in markets and zones not in conflict.
Regarding future plans, TRB is preparing for exhibitions in Egypt and Abu Dhabi, with Indonesia on the agenda for the coming year. Ristić emphasized that each exhibition is a significant investment, and the company aims to use its capital to invest in new products and additional equipment.
Company is celebrating its patron saint’s day, Saint Dimitrije – Mitrovdan, and has grown from 80 employees 11 years ago to currently employing 1,000 people. Since taking over the company in 2012, Ristić stated that they managed to repay over 20 million marks in debt and invest almost 60 million KM.