OSLO, Feb 3 (Aljazeera) - Norway will order 54 new German-made Leopard 2 tanks for its army from the Krauss-Maffei Wegmann Group, the country’s prime minister has said.

“We ensure that we have the same tanks as our Nordic neighbours and many key NATO allies,” Jonas Gahr Store told a news conference.

He added Norway, which shares a border with Russia, will have the option to buy a further 18 tanks at a later time. “This further strengthens our relationship with Germany,” Store said.

The Nordic nation, a NATO member, had been weighing up whether to choose either German-made Leopard 2 A7 tanks or the rival Korean-produced K2 Black Panther, made by Hyundai Rotem, as part of a new bout of military procurement.