MOSCOW, March 24 (RIA Novosti) – The volume of Russia’s arms exports this year has topped the $2 billion mark, with outstanding weapons orders standing at $47 billion, a senior government official said Monday.
“As of today, Russia has supplied military products worth $2 billion to its foreign customers,” said Alexander Fomin, the head of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation.
Last year, Russia exported $15.7 billion worth of weaponry, up $2.5 billion from 2011, with plans to increase annual arms sales to $50 billion by 2020 in a race for the top spot.
Russian shipments accounted for 27 percent of global arms exports last year, just behind the United States at 29 percent, according to a report published last week by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.
Among the major importers of Russian weapons and military equipment are India, China, Vietnam, Indonesia, Venezuela, Algeria and Malaysia.
Fomin, who was speaking ahead of a defense exhibition in Chile, said that Russia is prepared to negotiate contracts on a wide range of military and civilian products with its South American partners, including Beriev Be-200 amphibious aircraft, Irkut MS-21 mid-range jet airliners and regional Sukhoi Superjet-100s.
According to Fomin, Russia would also propose licensed production of technologies with Chile, a traditional customer of US-made weapons.
“We are offering our Chilean partners a localization of production in their country, which is certainly a very beneficial aspect of our proposed contracts.”
Fomin said that Russia would float a joint venture with Brazil to co-produce Sukhoi T-50 fifth-generation fighter jets. Experts consider the plane comparable to the American F-22 Raptor.