Russian Arms Sales Hit Record $15.2 Billion In 2012


Russia’s defence industry exported a record $15.16 billion worth of weapons and military equipment to foreign countries in 2012, claimed officials this week, beating a previous forecast set in late-December and cementing the nation’s position as the world’s second largest arms exporter after the U.S.


Russia’s defence industry exported a record $15.16 billion worth of weapons and military equipment to foreign countries in 2012, claimed officials this week, beating a previous forecast set in late-December and cementing the nation’s position as the world’s second largest arms exporter after the U.S.

““Our plans have been fulfilled by 111.8 percent,” said Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation Chief Alexander Fomin, as cited by Ria Novosti. “In the past ten years, we have seen a general increase in exports, which have tripled since 2003.”

[quote]“The portfolio of orders for defense-related products has also tripled. Its current value exceeds $46 billion,” he noted.[/quote]

Fomin said that the increase in sales was a result of an expanded number of clients, particularly in Africa. Among new purchasers of Russian equipment this year included Ghana, Oman, Tanzania and Afghanistan.

Additionally India remains the leading purchaser of Russian arms, with Russian-made military equipment accounting for nearly 70 percent of all Indian arms supplies.

“The strategic nature of partnership between India and Russia is witnessed by the unprecedented level of our military and technical cooperation,” said Russian Vladimir Putin during a visit to India last month.

[quote]”The joint development of advanced armaments rather than just purchasing military products would be key to future relations,” he noted.[/quote]

Related: Russia Aims To Double Trade With India In 3 Years

Related: The World’s Largest Arms Importer is Now India, not China

Related: Iraq-Russia Signs First Major Weapons Deal Post-Saddam: Reports

Richard Weitz, a senior fellow and director of the Center for Political-Military Analysis at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C., told the International Business Times that Southeast Asian countries, such as Vietnam, Indonesia and Myanmar, were also gradually building a stockpile of Russian-made weapons.

“The key word is subtle,” Weitz said of the quiet arms race picking up in the region. “All Asian countries are upgrading their weapons systems, and putting a lot of money into their defense. I think the Vietnamese are concerned about China. And Indonesia is upgrading in response to everyone else upgrading.”

Weitz also speculated that Russia may also still be selling weapons to Syria, although Moscow reported no major arms deals with the embattled nation in 2012.

“Yes,” said Weitz, with certainty, when asked on possible Russia-Syria deals. “They’re probably giving them helicopters. They’re not giving them new stuff, but probably just fixing what they have.”

Related: Russia Admits To Selling Syria $1 Billion in Weapons Last Year

Related: Russia Printing & Supplying Currency To Assad’s Regime: Report

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