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14 May, 2014 15:58

Russian defense industry should obey ‘made in Russia’ principle – Putin

Russian defense industry should obey ‘made in Russia’ principle – Putin

No branch in Russia’s defense industry should depend on foreign producers President Vladimir Putin said, saying everything the industry needs must be made at home.

"We must ensure that everything our defense industry needs is produced on our territory – for us not to be dependent on anyone, in any way concerning the supply of our army and navy with new weapons," Putin said at a meeting at his Bocharov Ruchey residence in Sochi.

“I am sure this would benefit our industry,” he added.

The Russian leader admitted the measure would lead to extra costs, but it was the correct course of action to choose.

"Small additional funds will be needed," Putin said. "But the process is right.”

It would also mean adjusting the work of domestic research centers in accordance with the new objectives.

“We need to look at how work with research centers has been organized, and to work more closely with the Academy of Sciences,” Putin said.

A new round of negotiations dedicated to the defense procurement program will be taking place in the next three days, according to the president. These series of talks come six months after similar meetings.

Russian President Vladimir Putin (RIA Novosti/Aleksey Nikolskyi)

"We have agreed on the unconditional implementation of defense procurement and efficient use of funds allocated for this," the president said. A total of 20 trillion rubles are allocated for these purposes and 3 trillion rubles for re-equipping defense industry complex companies, he said.

Last month the government was ordered to analyze the situation and calculate additional necessary resources related to the issue, and estimate the terms in which it can be implemented.

In his speech on April 28, Putin also voiced plans “to conduct import substitution,” a process he estimated would take between 1.5 and 2.5 years, depending on the type of products.

Back then Putin particularly referred to Ukraine, saying that Russia switching to domestic products would “likely lead to disaster” because Moscow is the only consumer the Ukrainian defense industry has.

For example, Ukraine was producing engines for most Russian military helicopters, including the Mi-24, the R-27 medium-range air-to-air missiles for the Russian air force and many critical components, like drogue parachutes and hydraulics for fighter jets. Ukraine also makes the gears used in many Russian ships and transport planes at the Antonov factory in Kiev. Many weapons the Russian military uses incorporate Ukrainian parts.