President Vladimir Putin:
Good afternoon, colleagues,
On our agenda today we have a range of issues related to making our military-technical cooperation with foreign states more effective.
As has been said on past occasions, our successes in this area not only strengthen our country’s international economic and political positions, but also constitute a powerful additional development resource for our defence industry and a stimulus for related science-intensive and high-technology sectors.
Military-technical cooperation greatly complements the full range of our country’s intergovernmental relations. Confirmation of this can be seen in the results of my recent visit to Indonesia. As you know, an agreement was signed during this visit to make available a targeted state credit to Indonesia for the purchase of Russian military goods. I am confident that this decision will provide a great boost to Russian-Indonesian military-technical cooperation and economic cooperation in general, and will strengthen the situation in the region. Our economy will also benefit from this decision because it will help us to sterilise the money supply, and because Indonesia is without any doubt a solvent country with a growing economy and large energy revenues.
I note that Russian military exports have practically doubled since 2001. Good conditions are in place for the sector’s continued development. Many procedures for the export of arms, military equipment and spare parts have been simplified and the list of goods that we export has been diversified. Our leading enterprises are developing promising cooperation with partners in the form of joint research and development of experimental weapons models. We need to develop this kind of cooperation and make use of the opportunities it provides for improving the arms our country produces.
Improvements have also been made to the way state regulation of the military-technical cooperation sector is organised.
Today it is important not just to consolidate these positive trends. I particularly stress and I call the Government leadership’s attention to the fact that what is most important today is responsibility for delivering quality products, especially complex weapons systems. Of course, it is impossible to totally guarantee against glitches, but we do need to introduce much tougher standards of reliability for our arms and equipment. Our foreign partners’ confidence in Russia’s military-technical and scientific and technical potential, and our own capabilities, the possibilities of our Armed Forces, all depend directly on our ability to ensure the highest quality. The higher the quality, the greater the confidence and the more demand there will be for our arms and military equipment on world markets, not to mention that our own army and navy will be able to act that much more reliably and efficiently.
The quality of military exports is not just an economic concept. It is also a matter of our country’s prestige, and this is why all participants in the process, all who play a part in the military-technical cooperation system, including the Government of the Russian Federation, must share the responsibility. I hope that we will look in detail today at the state of affairs in this area and outline the measures required to improve the quality of our military goods.
The second item on the agenda today is that of reliable controls to ensure that the countries that buy our arms and weapons systems use them for their designated purposes only.
As I have said, Russia’s arms exports aim solely to strengthen the defence capacity of the countries to which we export our products, and to maintain stability and regional security in different parts of the world. This is an absolute priority as far as we are concerned. Russia has always complied strictly with all of its international obligations in the military-technical sector, in particular as far as export control regimes are concerned, and it will continue to do so. But at the same time, we cannot and will not give consideration to any attempts to impose restrictions upon us based on unilateral or politicised criteria. In this respect, I would like to repeat once again that Russia is a reliable partner for all of its counteragents.