Tag Archives: Sukhoi

Why Russia needs China to buy its weapons

Despite intellectual property concerns, Russia recently agreed to sell 24 Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets to China – a deal worth $2 billion. But what is driving Moscow to seek deeper trade ties with Beijing? DW examines.

By Gabriel Domínguez

The deal, announced last week by Russian defense conglomerate Rostec, makes China the first foreign contractor of the multi-role Sukhoi Su-35 (main picture), an upgraded and highly maneuverable fighter jet. While the deal has yet to be confirmed by Beijing, Russian daily newspaper Kommersantquoted Rostec CEO Sergey Chemezov on November 19 as saying: “The protracted talks on Su-35 deliveries to China have ended. We have signed the contract.”

The agreement reportedly includes not only the supply of 24 jets to the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) for a total of $2 billion ($83 million per unit) but also the delivery of ground support equipment and reserve aircraft engines. The first batch of the planes, with the NATO reporting name Flanker-E, is expected to be delivered next year.

A win-win situation?

Russian sales of advanced weapons to China, including modern combat aircraft, are not new. Indeed, throughout the post-Soviet period, China has been one of Russia’s most important customers for arms exports. The Chinese have been purchasing systems, such as the Su-27 fighter jet, and advanced surface-to-air missiles, from Russia for over a decade.

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Rafale deadlock gives thrust to Russian 5th-gen jet project

By , TNN

NEW DELHI: Faced with continuing deadlock in the mega deal to acquire 126 French Rafale fighters, India is now pressing the throttle to seal the even bigger project with Russia for the stealth fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA).

India has told Russia it wants deliveries of the FGFA to begin in 36 months after the main contract is inked, instead of the 94 months envisaged earlier, top defence sources said.

With this “accelerated delivery timeframe” becoming the main objective, India is ready to forego the earlier plan for a 50:50 design and work-share agreement with Russia on its under-development FGFA called PAK-FA or Sukhoi T-50.

India is also no longer insisting that all the single-seat stealth fighters required by IAF be built in India by defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics at its Ozar facility. “We have agreed to a lesser work-share for a realistic contract, with the initial lot of the FGFA being imported and the rest being made here under technology transfer,” said a source.

“Like for the Russian Sukhoi-30MKI fighters (majority of the 272 Sukhois contracted for $12 billion are being made by HAL), the curve in technology absorption will also be steep in the FGFA project,” he added.

Faced with a sharp decline in the number of fighter squadrons in IAF, India wants to fast-track the FGFA project under which its “perspective multi-role fighter” will be based on PAK-FA but tweaked to its requirements.

The final FGFA design contract has been hanging fire since India and Russia completed their initial work under the $295 million preliminary design contract signed in December 2010. India will overall spend around $25 billion on the FGFA project if it goes ahead with its plan to induct 127 such fighters, as earlier reported by TOI.

All this has gained urgency since India feels French aviation major Dassault is being needlessly intransigent over the pricing mechanism in the final negotiations for the over $20 billion MMRCA (medium multi-role combat aircraft) project. Under it, the first 18 Rafale fighters were to be delivered off-the-shelf, with the remaining 108 being produced in India.

“But Dassault’s costing for the 108 Rafales to be built by HAL has undergone a major hike. It amounts to changing the price line that led to Rafale’s selection over Eurofighter Typhoon as the L-1 (lowest bidder) in the MMRCA competition,” said the source.

“The MoD simply cannot sign the contract if the L-1 price is altered. Dassault should relent and stick to its commercial bid submitted in response to the original RFP (request for proposal),” he added.

Both sides are furiously working to break the deadlock since India wants to take a final call on the MMRCA project before Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits France in early-April, as earlier reported by TOI.

News courtesy: The Times of India
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