President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues.
This is the year’s first meeting of the Commission for Military Technical Cooperation with Foreign States. I propose that we discuss current issues in this area and approve plans for the near future.
As is custom, I will start with last year’s results. Let me note that Russia is keeping its standards high, confirming its status as one of the leading suppliers on the global arms market. The quantity of foreign supplies grew for the third year in a row, to over $15 billion last year.
The ability to work even in the face of political provocations and economic sabotage highlights the strengths of the Russian system of military technical cooperation, its sustainability and enormous potential.
I would like to thank the managers and personnel of our defence enterprises, all those who work on military technical cooperation, for the results that have been achieved. This success means even more considering the tough, uncompetitive conditions Russian enterprises are forced to operate under. It is no secret that those nations that want to cooperate with Russia in the military technical field are being pressured in an unprecedented, open manner, with the intention of not only removing a competitor from the global arms market but also undermining the defence capabilities of some countries and further delaying their progress in the military sphere.
The ability to work even in the face of political provocations and economic sabotage highlights the strengths of the Russian system of military technical cooperation, its sustainability and enormous potential. These are the judgments of current and potential buyers of Russian arms and military equipment. The geographic reach of our military technical cooperation is constantly expanding, with the number of partners already in excess of 100 nations.
Last year the value of signed contracts nearly doubled to exceed $16 billion. At present, the portfolio for Russian arms and military equipment stands at $45 billion. This means the Russian defence industry has secured orders for the most advanced and promising defence systems for the next several years.
We have a time-tested reputation as an honest, upstanding business partner who always strictly honours contractual and international legal obligations.
The experience of modern warfare and conflicts shows that neglecting the means of defending the sovereignty of the state and the security of the people is unacceptable. Russia will continue to actively pursue military technical cooperation with all interested nations, including in the most high-tech segments in those classes of weapons – air force, counter-air defence, ground forces, navy – that displayed exceptional efficiency in the Syria operation.
But let me emphasise that we have never placed and will never place commercial profit above the interests of global security. We have a time-tested reputation as an honest, upstanding business partner who always strictly honours contractual and international legal obligations.
Let us move on to our discussion of the agenda.