NIZHNI NOVGOROD, March 29. /TASS/. The decision to create within the Almaz-Antey concern a new industrial plant in Nizhni Novgorod stemmed from the need for easing the work load on other defense-industrial complex enterprises, which are no longer capable of coping with the amount of export contracts, Putin said while visiting the 70th Victory Anniversary Plant in Nizhni Novgorod.
"We did that [built a new plant in Nizhni Novgorod], because the existing manufacturers were no longer capable of coping with the amount of contracts, including export contracts. It became clear that the existing enterprises are unable to deliver the amount of products required under our export contracts at the moment," Putin told the plant’s workers.
"Russian weapons owe their popularity to reliability and high effectiveness," he said.
In building the plant in Nizhni Novgorod specialists proceeded from the awareness that "the competence and level of training of workers and engineers will help achieve a fundamentally new, unparalleled system of production of military technologies."
"This hardware is extremely necessary for building up the army’s defense capability and ensuring the security of Russia and not only for that," Putin said. He appreciated the quality of air defense systems and radar stations the plant had on offer and stressed their good export prospects.
Russia’s military technical cooperation with European countries is practically curtailed, which is in interests of neither Russia, nor Europe, Putin went on to say.
"Military technical cooperation with European states has practically stopped. And I would like to stress that it was not our initiative. We hope it is a temporary phenomenon," he said at a meeting of the presidential commission on military technical cooperation with foreign countries.
He said he is confident that it is in the interests of all European countries to resume open and productive cooperation in all spheres, including in the area of military technical cooperation. "It will undoubtedly build up trust," he noted.
The president stressed that Russia’s traditional partners, such as member countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), India, Iraq, Egypt, Vietnam, China, Algeria and some other states, play a major role in Russia’s defense order portfolio. Apart from that, "new weapons markets in Africa, Latin America, South Asia and the Middle East are being developed," he said. "This work is to be continued," he underscored, adding that in 2015 intergovernmental agreements of military technical cooperation were signed with five states.
In 2015, Russia exported its defense-related products to 58 world nations and an overall number of Russian partners in this sphere exceeds 100, Putin noted.
According to Putin, Russia exported defense products totaling $14.5 bln in 2015.
"Export of Russian defense products turned to be even higher than we planned and amounted to $14.5 bln," Putin said at the meeting of the presidential commission on military-technical cooperation with foreign countries.
"Russia remains the second in the list of global leaders in defense equipment and arms supplies on the global markets, with confident breakaway from countries following us," Putin said.
"National weapons companies are indeed maintaining their reputation against the background of the complicated global situation and economic challenges," the President said.
"Defense industry companies are making really high quality products decently competing on international markets. Capabilities of our equipment and armament were also convincingly demonstrated in practice, in the combat situation when struggling with the terrorist threat," the head of state added.
Acquisition of a right to independent foreign economic activity by certain Russian defense technology companies will make possible to boost high technology products export and expand contacts with foreign countries, Russian President Vladimir Putin continued.
"Management companies of the so-called "integrated entities" [stable groups of legal entities connected with each other by cooperation and delegating a portion of rights to a central company of an integrated structure - TASS] of the defense industry will be eligible for independent foreign trade operations this year," Putin said at the meeting of the presidential commission on military-technical cooperation with foreign countries. The relevant law will come into force from July 1, he added.
Exportation of defense products for participation in international fairs and the procedure for training foreign defense and defense technology staff were simplified last year.
"We expect such developments will make possible to scale up Russian high technology products export and broaden contacts with foreign states," Putin said.
The law to be effective from July 1 provides for granting a right to independent foreign trade activity of after-sales maintenance of defense equipment for management companies of integrated structures if at least 51% of their shares (participation interests) are held by the federal government or the state corporation Rostec.