India Signs Agreements for Russian Arms

India signs agreements for Russian arms

13 March 2010

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh addresses journalists as Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin looks on during a signing of agreement and joint statement to the press in New Delhi on March 12, 2010. Russia is to build 12 nuclear reactors in India, half of them by 2017, Sergei Kiriyenko, the head of Russia’s state atomic agency said. Putin, on a two-day visit to India, had described nuclear energy as one of the “most important and promising areas of cooperation” between Russia and India. AFP PHOTO/RAVEENDRAN
India embraces Russia arms (Los Angeles Times):

India signed five deals Friday to purchase more than $7 billion in hardware and expertise from Russia, including an aircraft carrier, a fleet of MIG-29 fighters, defense and space technology and at least 12 civilian nuclear reactors.

 On the minds of both parties, analysts said, was a nation not present at the signing. “China will be the ghost in the room,” wrote analyst C. Raja Mohan in an opinion piece this week in the Indian Express.

 Having a working aircraft carrier — India’s only carrier, the 50-year-old British-built Viraat, rarely leaves port — should allow India to expand its presence in the Indian Ocean. India has watched China in recent years forge strategic port alliances with Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Myanmar as part of Beijing’s South Asian “string of pearls” strategy.

 China doesn’t have an aircraft carrier, although U.S. intelligence reports suggest it could within five years. Nor is it expected any time soon to base military craft in the Indian Ocean. But Beijing is heavily outspending India on defense and is keen to safeguard its seaborne oil trade with the Middle East, a lifeline for its hyper-charged economy.

 “China is not now in the Indian Ocean, but we don’t know what will happen in 15 years,” said Rahul Bhonsle, a retired Indian brigadier general and head of Security-Risks.com, a military analysis firm. “They’ve already showed their capabilities in the Pacific, and we need to be ready.”

India and Russia Build Ties With Pacts (New York Times):

 

India and Russia signed a series of agreements on nuclear, space and military issues on Friday, after a visit by Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.

 Mr. Putin’s visit, and the warm reception he received here from his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, represent a warming relationship between nations with a long history of friendship that has been challenged by India’s increasingly cozy ties to the United States.

 The agreements pave the way to build at least a dozen more Russian nuclear power plants for an energy-starved India, and to funnel more Russian weapons to India’s military.

 The countries also reached agreements to work together on space and fertilizer projects, two crucial areas for India, which has sought to send rockets into space even as its farmers, who make up about 70 percent of the population, struggle to coax subsistence from the soil.

 As a pioneer of the Non-Aligned Movement, India was officially neutral in the cold war, but in practical terms it had a much closer relationship with the Soviet Union than it did with the United States, a country it viewed warily for ideological and geopolitical reasons.

 In a post-cold-war world, India and Russia remain important allies. India buys the vast majority of its weapons from Russia, and has invested in Russian oil and gas in an effort to guarantee supplies to keep its rapidly growing economy going. The countries also make up half of the BRIC Group of rapidly growing economies, along with Brazil and China.

Russia signs India nuclear reactor deal (BBC News):

 

Russia has announced it will build 16 nuclear reactors in India as part of defence and energy deals.

 The long-anticipated nuclear agreement came as Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin visited India.

 He said nuclear co-operation was one of the most important aspects in the partnership between the two countries which have strong trade ties.

 Russia’s state-owned nuclear company earlier said six of the reactors would be built by 2017.

 Russia is already building two reactors in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

 “The agreement sees construction of up to 16 nuclear reactors in three locations,” Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov, accompanying Mr Putin, said.

 Russia is competing with French and US firms for contracts to build nuclear power plants in Asia’s third-largest economy which is looking to increase its energy supply to sustain rapid economic growth.

 The increased competition began after India’s landmark civilian nuclear deal with the US in 2005 which ended the isolation India had experienced since it tested an atom bomb in 1974.

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