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Western sanctions will not impact supply of S-400 missile systems to India: Russia

NEW DELHI (PTI):  Russia has said there will be no impact of the Western sanctions against it on the supply of S-400 missile systems to India.

At a media briefing on Wednesday, Russian Ambassador-designate Denis Alipov also referred to a bilateral mechanism to do business in national currencies.

"As regards the S-400 deal, be rest assured that it will not be impacted in any way. It is a 100 per cent surety.... As regards the overall trade and economic cooperation, we will see what will be the ultimate impact of those severe restrictions that are being imposed," he said.

The Western countries have imposed severe sanctions on Russia in the last few days following its military invasion of Ukraine.

In October 2018, India had signed a USD 5 billion deal with Russia to buy five units of the S-400 air defence missile systems, despite a warning from the Trump administration that going ahead with the contract may invite US sanctions.

Russia has already started the supply of the missile systems.

To a question on the impact of the sanctions on bilateral trade, Alipov said it will largely depend on the readiness of the "Indian partners" to continue with the engagement.

"We have bilateral mechanisms and means of doing business in national currencies. Much will depend on the readiness of the Indian partners to continue the business because some of them are over-cautious as regards their exposure to the US and European markets," he said.

Replying to a question on whether the Western sanctions and the conflict in Ukraine will impact the overall delivery of key defence equipment to India, Alipov said there are mechanisms in place to offset the impact of the restrictions.

"Russia has always risen from the ashes. It will rise again. Do not have any doubt about that. We have taken steps to secure ourselves," he said.

"Our economy is stable and I believe we will withstand the pressure that we are experiencing and will experience in the future," the Russian ambassador-designate added.

"As regards the bilateral trade in defence, we have the mechanism of cooperation and transactions independent of western mechanisms," he said.


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