14 Mei 2009
Su-30 of Vietnam - will add 12 more (photo : HHVN)
MOSCOW - Russia has secured an order from Vietnam for 12 Su-30MK2 fighter jets worth more than $500 million (368 million euros), the Vedomosti newspaper said May 14, citing top aviation industry officials.
The contract with Russian state arms exporter Rosoboronexport was inked in January, according to the paper, adding that the supersonic fighters are to be sold without on-board weapons.
Contracts for missiles and other arms to equip the planes could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, the daily reported.
A source in the Russian defense industry confirmed the newspaper report and added that the first planes would be delivered in 2009, the Interfax news agency reported.
"A contract for the delivery of Su-30MK2s was signed by Rosoboronexport at the beginning of this year," the source told Interfax. "The delivery of the first Su-30MK2 to the client is planned by the end of the year."
The contract with Hanoi is worth more than $600 million (440 million euros) to Russia, according to the industry source.
Just last month, media reported Russia had sealed a $1.8 billion deal for the sale of six submarines to the Vietnamese navy.
With these contracts Vietnam becomes one of Russia's five largest arms clients, alongside India, Algeria, Venezuela and China, Vedomosti said.
The weapons trade has proved one of Russia's most profitable sectors since the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Russia saw record arms sales in 2008 of $8.35 billion (6.5 billion euros), according to figures released by President Dmitry Medvedev in February, and Rosoboronexport said last month it expected similar results in 2009.