2020 Indo-Russia Relations to Witness Renewed Military and Trade Ties: Russian Envoy

Representative image

New Delhi: The coming year would see India and Russia striving towards developing military dialogue and deepening counter-terrorism cooperation bilaterally within the framework of BRICS, SCO, RIC and other relevant formats.

In an effort to further strengthen military relations with India, Russia plans to implement contracts exceeding
$14.5 billion as well as the Inter-Governmental Agreement aimed at joint development and production of military equipment and spare parts.

As part of meeting between the two leaders Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Russian President Vladimir Putin at the recently concluded annual summit, Russia is planning to localise up to 80 per cent of various platforms and is also looking at the possibility for the joint entry into third countries.

Addressing media persons in a year-end press meet in New Delhi, Russian Ambassador to India Nikolay Rishatovich Kudashev said on December 24, “after recently completing the largest tri-Services exercise INDRA-2019, the two sides are looking forward to next rounds of joint military exercises.”

Both countries have already agreed to extend the agreement for mutual military and technical cooperation for 10 years which will expire in 2030.

In a joint statement which was released at the end of the annual meet in September, it was decided that there will be no delay in spare parts as well as improving the after-sales service system for the military platforms being used by the Indian Armed Forces.

Today’s Indian armed forces are using almost 60 per cent of military platforms from Russia which has been recognised as one of the most trusted partners in the military field.

Besides fielding the upgraded Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29UPG ‘Fulcrum-E’ fighter aircraft for various programmes, there is an India-Russia Joint Venture (JV) to manufacture Kamov Ka-226T ‘Hoodlum’ light utility helicopters which are expected to locally produce 140 rotorcraft. These helicopters will be the main light utility helicopter of the Indian armed forces.

As was announced earlier, the Indian Navy will be receiving four Project 11356 Grigorovich-class frigates, out of which two will be built in Russia by the Yantar Shipyard (a subsidiary of the United Shipbuilding Corporation) and two at the Goa Shipyard Limited.

India is currently operating around 1,000 of T-90S Bhishma Main Battle Tanks, which have largely been made in India and production under the license of the 3VBM42 Mango 125 mm armour-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS) rounds for those vehicles is going on.

Talks are going on with Russia for the anti-tank capabilities of the ground troops.

State-owned Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) is already producing under license the Konkurs-M ‘AT-5b Spandrel’ anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs).

A plant in Korwa (Uttar Pradesh) has been inaugurated, where the Kalashnikov AK-203 7.62 mm assault rifles, under a joint venture of Indo-Russia Rifles Private Limited will be manufactured.