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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,
I suggest that we use this meeting to look at the preliminary results of our work in 2012. Naturally, we will also talk about future prospects and how to improve the efficacy of our military technology cooperation with other nations.
Sergei Shoigu has joined our commission. You know him well – he is the Defence Minister of the Russian Federation. He is an experienced person, a professional. I am confident that he will be an active participant in our work.
Now let’s talk about the positive results we have had. This year, we have reached a record level of military goods exports. They exceeded $14 billion, surpassing our plans for the year.
At the same time, I would like to note the qualitative changes in our military technology cooperation. Along with traditional exports of modern arms systems, we are developing new areas of activity, first and foremost, joint production of military equipment and research work. This cooperation with our partners allows us to lower the production costs, increase competitive advantage of our products and create conditions for entering third country markets.
I consider it very important that we have started to work seriously on re-establishing our positions on the market of modernising and repairing (Soviet) military equipment. First and foremost, this is important for reaffirming our expertise, taking the opportunity to consolidate our positions in our traditional markets, engaging in repairs and modernisation – this, too, involves a fairly high volume of orders.
All this allows us not only to maintain our current portfolio of orders in the military technology cooperation sector, but also to expect it to grow. Thus, just this year alone, we signed new export contracts worth over $15 billion.
Russian defence companies get a guaranteed buffer for their future work, allowing them to create jobs and upgrade production infrastructure, engage in large-scale research and development, and implement cutting-edge technologies in their overall work.
We are strengthening our nation’s position as one of the world’s leading producers of special-purpose military goods. Naturally, Russia will continue to cooperate with its traditional partners in the military technology sector, but it is still important for us to enter new markets, broadening the list of goods and services we can offer.
We understand that the competition in this segment of the international market is very strong. And in order to succeed in this battle, we must work to be the leaders, giving our arms producers and developers more opportunities to demonstrate their scientific and technical potential, advertising Russia’s latest achievements at special exhibitions. We already have several venues operating, and they are working quite well.
Our defence companies show their products at some twenty major exhibitions abroad; and in Russia, as I said, we also have our own set of prestigious, sought-after exhibition venues.
Every year, we host up to ten international forums, many of which are globally recognised. These include the MAKS International Aviation and Space Salon and the Technologies in Engineering forum in Zhukovsky (just outside of Moscow), the Maritime Defence Show in St Petersburg and the Russian Expo Arms in Nizhny Tagil.
Naturally, it is imperative to constantly increase the level of organisation for these types of events, consistently developing the corresponding infrastructure. Holding exhibitions is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate Russia’s real positions and potential as one of the global arms market leaders, to establish mutually beneficial contacts with related civilian industries and Russian business circles. And I will particularly note that this kind of work should help with the military and patriotic education of our citizens, particularly young people.
I propose that today we have a detailed discussion of the steps needed to implement our suggestions to our partners on promoting exhibition activity. We should be able to show our products to full advantage, which means expanding our opportunities in terms of military technology cooperation. Let’s discuss all these issues.