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Def Min leaves today for 2-nation visit to Russia, Malaysia

A file photo.

NEW DELHI (PTI): Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar will embark on a two-nation tour to Russia and Malaysia from November 1 to 5, where he will set stage for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the Eurasian country later this year.

The Defence Minister will also attend the ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) in Kaula Lampur after his Russia trip.

Parrikar will leave for Moscow on Friday. He will also meet his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu and discuss range of issues which includes joint production of Kamov Ka-226, Mi-17V-5 helicopters helicopters, purchase of S-400 missile systems. The Minister will also go to St Petersburg where he will visit Admiralty Shipyard and Krylov State Research Centre, a ship building research institute.

He is also expected to discuss the possibility of manufacturing the spare parts for Su-30MKI under the 'Make in India' programme.

"For Su-30MKI fighter jets... We have almost 220 of them now and ultimately the number will reach 270, which represents about 40 per cent of Indian Air Force. When you have 40 per cent of air force strength from a particular maker, you are obviously interested in ensuring that they are serviced properly.

"Those aspects will be discussed and we are coming to conclusions, to solutions to the problem. I hope that these problems will be resolved very soon so service operation is substantially enhanced," Parrikar said in an interview to Russian news agency TASS.

More importantly, in Russia he will prepare stage for Prime Minister's visit in December this year where several deals are expected to be finalised.

From Moscow, Parrikar will head to Malaysia for the ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) which will be held from November 3 to 5.


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