Abu Dhabi: Russia is expected to be the world’s second-largest weapons exporter, according to some of the country’s exhibitors at the International Defence and Exhibition (Idex) 2013.
“The Russian defence industry is in a good position to sell aircraft and other military equipment to emerging defense markets in Africa and Latin America as well as to more traditional buyers in south-east Asia,” the Institute for Near East & Gulf Military Analysis (Inegma) told Gulf News.
However, Inegma added that contractual details remain a hindrance to Russian arms sales.
“The only problem in selling Russian equipment is how the deals are structured, including post-sales maintenance and training,” Inegma said. “Improvements are being made in this contractual system but more work and guarantees need to be done.”
Russia holds leading positions on the global arms market. In 2012, exports of Russian arms totalled a record $14 billion (Dh51 billion) and new contracts for the supply of military equipment to other countries are valued at more than $15 billion, said Russia Arms Expo 2013 organisers in a briefing on Russian military industries.
“The lion’s share of Russian military industrial complex products are delivered to the countries of Eastern Europe, North Africa and China, with India enjoying its status as one of Russia’s key partners with contracts of $3 billion,” said Sergey Russakov, general director of Scientific Enterprise Association, Machine Building Technologies. “India still ranks first for Russian weapons, in 2012 taking delivery of Talwar-class frigates, 24 Su-30MKI jet fighters, several MiG-29K/UPGs and up to 20 Mi-17V-5 transport helicopters.”
Venezuela, Algeria and Vietnam are also up-and-coming consumers of Russian arms.
Last year, Russia resumed military collaboration with a number of foreign countries, including Ghana, Oman, Tanzania and Afghanistan, said Alexander Fomin, director of the Federal Service on Military and Technical Collaboration.
More than 10 per cent of the exhibitors at Idex 2013, the world’s largest arms trade show, are from Russia, with around 30 companies from the country taking part in the show — include defense industry plants and the state arms export monopoly and research departments. They will show products ranging from small arms to rocket systems.
The Moscow-based Almaz-Antei is one of the 30 largest defense manufacturers in the world, specialising in air defense and anti-aircraft weaponry, including the famous S-300 rocket system, which Russia was due to sell to Iran and other countries in the region, the company said in a statement.
Almaz-Antei gets 30 per cent of its revenues from export sales to China, India, South Korea and Venezuela. It reported 2009-10 export revenues of $1 billion, the statement said.
Another prominent participant is Tulsky Instrument Design, which also produces air-defense missiles, gun systems and armaments, anti-tank guided weapons and assault arms.
Tulsky Instrument Design said that last month, Brazil announced its intention to secure assembly licenses for Pantsir-S1 and Igla defense systems in a deal estimated at more than $1 billion.
The third-generation tanks Terminator and T-C are now on display in Abu Dhabi by Uralvagonzavod, based in Nizhny Tagil.