From Moscow with Weapons: UAE-Russia sign anti-armour missile deal

From Moscow with Weapons: UAE-Russia sign anti-armour missile deal
Russia is looking to expand its military investment in the Middle East by establishing a number of lucrative contracts with the UAE at the IDEX arms fare this week.
2 min read
21 February, 2017
The International Defence Exhibition and Conference got underway in Abu Dhabi on Sunday [Getty]
The United Arab Emirates entered into military contracts worth $1.9 billion on Monday, including a $700 million contract with Russian arms contractor Rosoboronexport.

The deal between the UAE and Rosoboronexport – which is owned by Russian state holding company Rostec – will see the Russian arms contractor supply 5,000 anti-armour missiles in addition to training and logistic support.

The UAE has also entered into talks with Rostec over the development of light fighter aircraft based on the MiG-29 twin-engine fighter aircraft with development set to kick off in 2018.

"One of the most important results for us from the past few days is the signing of an agreement with the Emirates in the field of military and industrial cooperation,” Sergey Chemezov, chief executive of Rostec, said on Monday.

"One of the fields of this cooperation is the creation, development and supply of the fifth-generation fighter jet.”

The apparent deal follows a similar joint venture agreed between Russia and India last year for the development of a new model of fighter jet.

It comes at a time when Russia is seeking to expand its military investment in the Middle East, as evidenced by the recent development of military bases in Syria, and the holding of joint military exercises with Egypt last year.

The Idex – International Defence Exhibition and Conference – got underway in Abu Dhabi on Sunday. It is the Middle East region’s largest military show.

Over 1,200 companies are taking part showcasing the latest technologies across land, sea and air sectors of defence.

In addition to deals with Rosoboronexport, according to Reuters, the UAE on Monday also awarded a contract worth $235 million (866 million dirhams) to Swedish company SAAB AB to provide new airborne surveillance systems.

UAE firm Maximus Air has also been awarded a $490 million (1.8 billion dirham) contract to provide air cargo planes.

The Idex conference is set to finish on Thursday.

Agencies contributed to this report