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India will remain the key buyer of Russian jets: Report


Su-30MK (SB003) sandwiched by a MiG-29 and Jaguar IS at Lohegaon AFS. A File Photo

MOSCOW (PTI): India will remain the main buyer of Russian fighter jets which include sophisticated Su-30MKI at least for next 15 years, a think tank has said.

'The Forecast for Combat Aircraft Deliveries to India', report published by the Moscow-based Centre for Analysis and Technologies (CAST) says New Delhi will buy up to 90 Su-30MKI fighters under existing contracts and may also purchase additional Su-30 or modernised MiG-29K deck-based fighters for the Indian Navy.

In addition, Russia signed in March last year a contract with the Indian Defence Ministry to upgrade around 70 MiG-29 fighters, in service since 1980s, and agreed to develop a fifth-generation fighter together with India.

Russia's MiG-35 four-plus generation medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) is currently in the race for the USD 10.6-billion mega tender to supply 126 multi-role fighters to the IAF.

CAST Director Ruslan Pukhov believes that the MiG-35 has an excellent chance of winning the tender because the Russian fighter is superior to its Western rivals in the fray.

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