(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) In light of the IDEX-2013 international arms exhibition being held in Abu Dhabi, it is reported that Russia is ready to offer the United Arab Emirates license-production of ammunition for BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles previously sold to the country, Pribor defense firm chief Oleg Chizhevsky has said.
"About 700 BMP-3's have been delivered to the UAE; naturally, there is high demand for those shells and we are ready to meet it in any form, in any format," he said in an exclusive interview with Russian Ria-Novosti news agency on Monday at the IDEX-2013 international arms exhibition in Abu Dhabi.
He did not specify which ammunition was being discussed. Russian arms manufacturers are ready to provide the entire range of modern high-quality ammunition to its foreign partners, he said, adding that Pribor supplies its products to 30 countries and another 15 states have ammunition manufacturing licenses. The BMP-3 is armed with a 100-mm low-velocity main gun, capable of firing 9M117 anti-tank missiles and shells, as well as a 2A72 30-mm cannon, according to its maker Kurganmashzavod.
For his part, Sergei Rusakov, general director of the Tekhnologii mashinostroyeniya (Machine-Manufacturing Technologies) concern, said it usually takes several years to reach a final agreement. Russia and the UAE signed a 70 Million contract in 2011 for modernization of 135 of the UAE's fleet of BMP-3 vehicles. It is noted that the IDEX-2013 runs from February 17-22. Earlier Monday, UAE Minister of Foreign Trade Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi conferred with Russian Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov.
Their meeting discussed ways of strengthening joint economic, trade and investment relations and the latest development in the global economy.
According to Emirates News Agency 'WAM', trade between the two countries reached around AED 2.8 Billion during the first 8 months of 2012 and reached AED 1.1 Billion during H1 2012 in the country's Free Zones.