Czech Army Cancels Purchase of SIG 716 and Meopta Optics

    SIG716 Precision Sniper (non-standard desert finish) Photo © Bryan Jones

    The Czech Defense Ministry has canceled a $4.5 million (USD) contract to purchase 238 USA-manufactured SIG716 rifles along with day/night optics and  spare parts and tools from Meopta, a prominent Czech optics manufacturer (Meopta was importing the rifles from SIG Sauer USA). The rifles were to replace their aging inventory of Soviet-era SVD rifles. The contact was cancelled because apparently the barrel life was shorter than what Meopta claimed.

    Prague Post reports …

    The Czech Defense Ministry cancelled the contract for the purchase of 238 new guns for long distance shooting for CZK98.3 million because the guns failed in the tests, Czech daily “Lidové noviny” writes on 24 October.

    “In August, the control tests showed that the rifles do not have the declared lifespan of the gun barrel and that their breakdown rate is higher,” Defense Ministry spokeswoman Jana Zechmeisterova told the paper.

    The ministry cancelled the contract on September 26, she said.

    The new rifles were to replace the old Soviet-made SVD sniper rifles. They would also have the caliber that is standard in NATO countries, the paper writes.

    The ministry signed the contract for the 238 rifles with a shooting accuracy distance of 600 meters with Meopta Systems in March. Night gunsights, spare parts and maintenance tools were part of the contract, too.

    The problems, to which the Czech military pointed, concerned the Sig Sauer SIG716 gun that Meopta Systems, a producer of optical systems, bought from the U.S. arms maker.

    “The producer declared certain parameters of the gun, but they were not met,” Šárka Vodáková, from Meopta, told LN.

    This does not mean there was anything wrong with the guns, rather the expectation/promises of/made to the Czech Defense Ministry. Barrel life is simple to test, so the question is why

    Thanks to REMOV for the tip.

    Steve Johnson

    I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!