SOCHI, July 2 (Itar-Tass) — President Vladimir Putin said the export of Russian military services had increased to 2.5 billion U.S. dollars in 2011.
At the same time, he demanded more organised work with customers, without delays in coordination.
“We must approve the system of post-sale and maintenance services. This is a very lucrative market and we certainly must not let it go,” Putin said at a meeting of the commission on military-technical cooperation on Monday, July 2.
The president referred to the supply of spare parts and assistance in repairing and upgrading equipment.
He noted “a general systemic problem – work with potential customers”.
Putin appeared to be displeased by the fact that “contracts are drafted, official inquiries from buyers and various approvals are considered too long sometimes”.
“We need a clear and prompt mechanism for coordinating and making decisions and the very principles of work should become more flexible,” the president said.
“I believe that the steps that have already been taken to give additional powers to enterprises and governmental bodies in the field of military-technical cooperation were absolutely justified and correct,” he said, adding, “Naturally, with higher responsibility for their implementation.”
“Experience shows that this approach proves effective as some defence enterprises obtained the right to export spare parts and repair and maintain equipment supplied earlier,” Putin said.
As a result, the export of services increased.
“Quality service, post-sale maintenance and training of specialists are important factors for advancing our arms exports,” he said.
“The export of Russian military products in the first half of 2012 exceeded 6.5 billion U.S. dollars, an increase of 14 percent from the same period of last year,” Putin said.
“We must keep this positive trend by all means,” he said.
According to the president, “On the whole the portfolio of export contracts is about 43 billion U.S. dollars. New export contracts worth 5.7 billion U.S. dollars have already been signed this year. This is 2.4 billion U.S. dollars more than in the first half of 2011,” the head of state said.
“On the whole, annual arms sales have more than doubled over the past seven years from 6 billion U.S. dollars in 2005 to 13 billion U.S. dollars in 2011,” he said.
Putin cited the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute as saying that Russia is the world’s second largest arms exporter with 24 percent of global arms exports.
“We must seek to increase Russia’s presence in the global arms market in terms of the geographic outreach, nomenclature and services,” he said.