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Russia Expects India's Advance Payment for S-400 by End of 2019

© Sputnik / Evgeny Odinokov / Go to the mediabankRussian S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile systems
Russian S-400 Triumf surface-to-air missile systems  - Sputnik International
MOSCOW 9 (Sputnik) - Russia is hoping to receive an advance payment for S-400 air defence systems from India by the end of 2019 so that the deliveries may begin in 2020 and be completed by 2025, Deputy Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) Vladimir Drozhzhov told reporters.

"The [payment] scheme has been agreed, and I hope that the first payment will soon be transferred by the Indian side", Drozhzhov said. "I think that by the end of 2020 - the beginning of 2021 the first system should be delivered. After the first set, the systems will be delivered under a certain schedule over the next few years, that is, India should get all the systems by2024-2025", he explained.

In early October 2018, Moscow and New Delhi concluded a contract on the deliveries of Russia's S-400 missile systems to India worth over $5 billion. The deal was signed during Russian President Vladimir Putin's two-day visit to India.

Previously, the US State Department gave India a subtle warning that buying weapons from Russia - in particular, S-400 missile defence systems - could compromise further arms deals between New Delhi and Washington, leading to the sanctions against India in line with Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

The S-400 is an advanced mobile air defence missile system which can carry three different types of missiles capable of destroying a variety of aerial targets at a short-to-extremely-long range, from reconnaissance aircraft to ballistic missiles.

Joint Construction of Submarines

According to Drozhzhov, Moscow has also offered New Delhi joint construction of submarines rather than licensed production of the boats, which is more profitable in technological terms.

"We offered India to build a submarine on the basis of our Amur-1650 project ... We do not offer licensed production, we propose to jointly design the boat and jointly build the lead vessel", the official said.

According to him, the Indian side will possess all the technological possibilities for the construction of the series after that.

"Naturally, such cooperation would involve the transfer of all technologies for its creation. Moreover, we offer the installation of the BrahMos missile system on this boat. This project can be successfully implemented in the interests of the two countries", Drozhzhov stressed.

India has previously announced a tender for the purchase of six diesel-electric submarines armed with land attack and anti-ship cruise missiles, in which Russia participates with Project 636 and 1650 Amur-class vessels.

According to media reports, potential foreign partners for the contract include Naval Group (France), Kockums (Sweden), Rubin Design Bureau (Russia) and Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (Germany).

Powerless Sanctions

The FSMTC Deputy Director also noted that Washington's restrictions won't prevent Russia from participating in Indian arms procurement tenders, including on purchase of 110 fighter jets, or deliveries of Russian weaponry if Moscow wins them.

"Sanctions do not bring anything good to anyone. Everyone understands this very well, so we are forced to find ways to circumvent them. We are grateful to our Indian partners for taking efforts in this respect", Drozhzhov said. "But since we have found solutions for a project like the S-400, we have found ways to cooperate on the Project 11356 frigates and Kalashnikov assault rifles, I hope that we will find the same solutions for the supply of fighter jets, and I see good prospects of our participation in the upcoming [light fighter] tender".

Russia's MiG corporation earlier reported that the new Russian MiG-35 light fighter, which is participating in the Indian Air Force tender for the purchase of 110 aircraft of this class, will cost New Delhi 2 less than its foreign competitors.

Kalashnikov Rifle Deal

Drozhzhov also said that the contract between the Indian Defense Ministry and the Russian-Indian joint venture and on deliveries of Russian Kalashnikov assault rifles may be signed soon.

"As for the Kalashnikov guns, for the first time in such a short time, we were able to create a joint venture [in the town of Korwa] and sign an agreement. It should be noted here that this was the political will of the two heads of state. We received a request for deliveries of more than 600,000 rifles. Currently, the joint venture is preparing a corresponding proposal for the Indian Defence Ministry. I think that these proposals from the joint venture should be sent to the Indian Defence Ministry in July. I hope that the corresponding contract between the joint venture and the Indian Defense Ministry will be signed [soon]", he announced.

In March, Russia and India inaugurated a plant, dubbed Indo-Russia Rifles Private Limited, that would be producing AK-203 Kalashnikov assault rifles in Korwa, Uttar Pradesh. According to Director General of Russian state arms exporter Rosoboronexport Alexander Mikheev, the capacity of the plant would allow India to fully equip its forces with the rifles.

Arms Orders in Total

Drozhzhov stated that a large portfolio of orders for the supply of Russian weapons and military equipment to India is about $14 billion.

"There are promising [Russia-India] joint venture projects. BrahMos has already proved to be very effective, a joint venture for the production of Ka-226 helicopters has been established, just recently a joint venture for the production of Kalashnikov assault rifles has been created", he said.

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