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India, Russia finalise AK-47 203 rifles deal: Report

A news report said that the Indian Army has a requirement for around 770,000 AK-47 203 rifles, of which 100,000 will be imported and the rest will be manufactured in India.

Published: 03rd September 2020 07:34 PM  |   Last Updated: 03rd September 2020 07:34 PM   |  A+A-

AK 47

Representational image

By PTI

MOSCOW: India and Russia have finalised a major deal for manufacturing AK-47 203 rifles in India during Defence Minister Rajnath Singh's ongoing visit here, the official Russian media reported on Thursday.

The AK-47 203 is the latest and most advanced version of the AK-47 rifle, which will replace the Indian Small Arms System (INSAS) 5.56x45 mm assault rifle. Russia's state-run Sputnik news agency said that the Indian Army has a requirement for around 770,000 AK-47 203 rifles, of which 100,000 will be imported and the rest will be manufactured in India. There was no official confirmation from the Indian government on the finalisation of the deal.

The rifles will be manufactured in India as part of the joint venture Indo-Russia Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL), established between the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB), the Kalashnikov Concern and Rosoboronexport -- the Russian state agency for military exports, it said.

The OFB would own a majority stake of 50.5 per cent in IRRPL while the Kalashnikov Group would have a 42 per cent share. The report said that Russia's state-owned export agency, Rosoboronexport, would own the remaining 7.5 per cent.

The 7.62×39 mm Russian weapon will be produced at the Korwa Ordnance Factory in Uttar Pradesh, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last year, the report said.

According to the report, the cost of per rifle is expected to be around USD 1,100, including the cost of technology transfer and of setting up the manufacturing unit. It added that the INSAS, which is use since 1996, has developed some issues such as jamming and magazine cracking at higher altitudes in the Himalayas.



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