Russia signs $18 Bln worth of new weapons export contracts – Putin

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Russia is the world’s second largest exporter of conventional weapons after the United States, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said. “We have confirmed this once again that Russia is one of the leaders of the global market and remains firmly in second place in terms of weapons export volume,” Putin said at a session of the commission for Russia’s military-technological cooperation with foreign states.

The US controls 29 percent of the world’s weapons market, Russia 27 percent, Germany 7 percent, China 6 percent, and France 5 percent, he said.

“Last year exports of Russian commodities and services as part of military-technological cooperation grew by 3 percent to $15.7 billion, which is a little higher than in 2012,” the president said.

New long-term contracts worth $18 billion were signed, bringing the “Russian portfolio” of arms export contracts to an all-time high of $49 billion, he said.

“It is important not to stop at this, but move rapidly to overhaul the industrial base, introduce cutting-edge technologies and broaden the agenda of research and development efforts,” Putin said.

Russian President says production of missile defense systems should grow

Russian President Vladimir Putin has reiterated the need to increase the production of missile defense systems, including those that form the backbone of air defense shields Russia has been building together with Belarus and Kazakhstan.

“There is a need to enhance the capacities for manufacturing our most in-demand air defense systems, as well as further develop the production of high-accuracy weapons used in air defense,” Putin said at a session of the commission for Russia’s military-technical cooperation with foreign states.

Russia’s S-300 and S-400 surface-to-air missile systems, as well as Pantsir-S1 missile and gun systems are leaders on the world’s weapons market today thanks to their technical and combat characteristics, reliability and simplicity, the president said.

“More than 70 countries of the world use Russian-made air defense hardware. It also forms the backbone of joint defense shields of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Russian-made air defense complexes have also been purchased by states of the Middle East, Southeast Asia and North Africa. Latin America’s interest in them is growing as well,” Putin said.

Russia accounts for about one-third of the world’s deliveries of missile defense systems, the president said. Russia’s share in these exports grew from 13 percent to 20 percent in 2013, he added.

“It is a very significant result and a very serious step forward,” Putin said.

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