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Russia Supplied India With Arms Worth $13 Billion In Past 5 Years: Report

Published: 16th Feb, 2023

Context

Russian supplied India with around $13 billion of arms during the past five years, and New Delhi has orders placed with Moscow for weapons and military equipment exceeding $10 billion, as per Russian state news agencies.

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Key-highlights

  • India is the world's biggest buyer of Russian arms, accounting for around 20% of Moscow's current order book.
  • Annual arms exports were about $14-15 billion, and the order book has remained steady at around $50 billion.

SIPRI’s Report

According to data firm Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, India was the top importer of Russian arms from 2017 to 2021, and Russian equipment made up 46% of India’s arms imports. 

India’s say in Russia-Ukraine war

  • New Delhi has not explicitly condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
    • Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called for dialogue and diplomacy to solve the conflict, now in its 12th month.
  • Despite the unprecedented pressure on India from Western countries led by the United States in connection with Russia's special operation in Ukraine, it continues to be one of Russia's main partners in the field of military-technical cooperation.

What are Russia’s more interesting systems?

  • Asian customers are particularly interested in Russia's-
    • S-400 Triumf missile defence systems
    • short-range surface-to-air missiles systems such as the Osa, Pechora or Strela
    • Su-30 warplanes
    • MiG-29 helicopters and drones

Russia in Aero India 2023 

Russia would be presenting about 200 samples of weapons and military equipment at the 14th international aerospace exhibition Aero India 2023.

India-Russia Defence Cooperation

  • Agreement on the Programme for Military Technical Cooperation: India-Russia defence cooperation is guided by the Agreement on the Programme for Military Technical Cooperation signed between the two countries.
    • The Agreement for 2021-2031 was signed during the inaugural meeting of India-Russia 2+2 Dialogue in 2021.
  • Important Major Contracts
    • Bilateral projects currently underway include licensed production of T-90 tanks and Su-30-MKI aircraft, supply of MiG-29-K aircraft and Kamov-31, upgrade of MiG-29 aircraft, etc.
    • Production of the Brahmos cruise missile.
    • The joint Venture namely Indo-Russia Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL) has been established and it has started production of AK-203 rifles in India under “Make in India” initiative.

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