Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov told RBC TV channel that India could be the first foreign customer to buy Russia’s most advanced S-500 Prometey air defense missile system.
When asked whether India would be the first country to purchase the Russian-made S-500, Borisov told RBC TV Channel on Monday, “Beyond a doubt, once we deliver this system to our troops, India will be the first on the list, if it expresses its desire to buy these advanced armaments.”
The S-500 ‘Prometei’ anti-aircraft missile system is the most advanced Russian mobile service to air system and was put into service earlier this year. In 2019, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed interest in buying the S-500 units.
The comments from the Russian deputy prime minister comes even as the delivery of its long-range S-400 ground-to-air missile defence system to India has begun.
The $5.5 billion deal for five S-400 systems had become a thorn in the growing US-India partnership, with the latter running the risk of facing the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) sanctions.
The CAATSA was passed in the US in 2017, on the back of the supposed involvement of Russia in the 2016 US presidential elections.
Under the CAATSA’s section 231, sanctions would be imposed on entities that “operate for or on behalf of” Russian defence or intelligence sectors.
The US has already imposed CAATSA on Turkey, a NATO ally, for the purchase of a batch of S-400 missile defence systems from Russia, however, it has yet to take a call on India
Even though the US said it will try to negotiate with India to spurn the deal, New Delhi has been rejecting the jurisdiction of a third country’s domestic law.
Earlier on December 6, during the 21st India-Russia summit, Russian Foreign minister Sergei Lavrov claimed that the US had been planning to undermine the deal and make India “obey the American orders”.
Defence forms the main pillar of the partnership between Russia and India. Brahmos missile, licensed production of SU 30 aircraft, T30 Tanks are some of the examples of this cooperation. The next big focus is the joint production of AK series assault rifles in India.
In addition, he also clearly denied that Russia getting less order in the International arms market “In this context, I disagree with their conclusions because they do not take into account many things that I know. Second, our statistical data shows that we have a stable long-term contract book of 50 billion USD, while recently, the annual export amount is 13-15 billion USD each year. Russia’s leading importers have signed long-term contracts with us,” emphasized the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia.
Borisov said Russia is ready to supply new weapons to the global arms market.
The Russian Defense Ministry announced this July 20 that the S-500 air defense system conducted a successful test-fire against a fast-moving ballistic missile target at the Kapustin Yar test range. The test launch confirmed the stated operational characteristics of the S-500.
The S-500 air defense missile system is designed to strike any existing and future enemy space assault weapon at any altitude and speed. Prometei is set to replace the S-500 Triumf surface-to-air missile system.