Russia to Fulfill Arms Contracts With Venezuela by Yearend
Russia’s state arms exporter Rosoboronexport is planning to complete the deliveries of weaponry under existing contracts with Venezuela by the end of 2013, the head of the company’s regional department, Sergei Ladygin, said on Tuesday.
“We will complete the deliveries of all weaponry to Venezuela in 2013,” Ladygin, who leads Rosoboronexport’s delegation at the LAAD-2013 arms show in Brazil, said.
The official did not specify the types of weaponry due to be supplied, but said the remaining deliveries were worth about $2 billion.
Between 2005 and 2007 Venezuela reached deals to buy $4-billion worth of arms from Russia, including Sukhoi fighter jets, combat helicopters, and over 100,000 light weapons, primarily the famous AK-103 assault rifles and a license to produce them in Venezuela.
Caracas also secured a $2.2-billion loan in 2010 to purchase a large batch of Russian weapons for its army, including 92 T-72M1M main battle tanks, about 240 BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles and BTR-80 armored personnel carriers, and a variety of artillery systems.
After the death of President Hugo Chavez in March, Russia vowed to continue military-technical cooperation with Venezuela regardless of who takes over power in the country.
Ladygin said Rosoboronexport was in talks with the current Venezuelan authorities about prospects of further arms deliveries to the Latin American country.
“We are ready to supply Venezuela with fast attack boats and submarines,” the official said.
Source: RIO DE JANEIRO, RIA Novosti News - 11 April 2013
Photo: The Venezuelan Army T-72B-1 Main Battle Tank (Photo by forte.jor.br)