The Ministry of Defense today announced the beginning of preliminary selection before the publication of a NIS 15 billion tender for building and operating new advanced supply centers for the IDF. The planned centers will replace the 17 existing centers operating from IDF bases around Israel, thereby freeing up 4,000 dunam (1,000 acres) of land, half of it high-demand areas. The plan is being led by the Ministry of Defense Southern Relocation Administration and a special administration founded to move the new venture forward in the IDF Technology and Logistics Directorate.
Under the Ministry of Defense's plan, the tender will be published in the first quarter of next year. The tender is for the selection of a franchise holder to build, maintain, and operate the new logistics centers for 25 years. The new centers will be built by 2023 on three existing IDF bases in southern, central, and northern Israel. The Ministry of Defense is not disclosing the precise location of the centers.
The IDF currently employs thousands of NCOs, officers, and civilians in the supply bases used for all its units. With the opening of the new centers, the emphasis in their activity will shift to robotics and automation, thereby eliminating hundreds of positions for civilians and NCOs. The defense establishment said today that the anticipated personnel cuts will be according to the streamlining plans in the framework of the Gideon multi-year plan for the IDF and the multi-year plans to follow it. In any case, there is no plan for mass layoffs. "We will know the exact number only when we make progress in the tender process," a source involved with the plan said today. The civilian franchise holder leading the new venture will be Israeli, but Israeli companies can compete in the tender in combination with a foreign company as a subcontractor in order to make it possible to import new know-how in logistics from abroad.
Southern Relocation Administration head Brigadier General (reserves) Yitzhak Cohen said today, "There is no military value in the army itself marketing food. This endeavor will be turned into a civilian enterprise as part of the transition to a unified supply center." Other parts of the logistics system in the framework of the new venture will be managed by the civilian enterprise selected in the tender. The Ministry of Defense wants the franchise holder to manage 70% of the logistical activity in the new centers, with the three future centers supplying all IDF units with food, medical equipment, hazardous materials, office equipment, and even tank engines.
Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - www.globes-online.com - on May 15, 2017
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