Russian air power has shocked the Paris Air Show (The Wall Street Journal, USA)

The Russian defense industry has reason to take heart: he was able to impress the public at the Paris Air Show, demonstrating for the first time outside of the Russian Su-35 fighter

Le Bourget — One of the biggest sensations at this week’s Paris Air Show was not just another airliner from Airbus or Boeing, a Russian fighter.

The new Su-35 demonstration flights performed for the first time outside of Russia, showing amazing maneuvers that can replicate only a few Western aircraft.  

It is equipped with the new Russian missile defense systems, and for the first time in a long time, able to compete with foreign counterparts.

"In my opinion, this shows that we are firmly occupy a leading place in the world", — said Mikhail Pogosyan, president of the issuing of the Su-35 "United Aircraft Corporation" — a holding company that was established in 2006 to consolidate and revive degraded the Russian aviation industry.

Two decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian defense industry has again strengthened in the global markets. "United Aircraft Corporation" and similar companies are reaping the fruits of many years of restructuring carried out under President Vladimir Putin, increase defense spending, and attention from Moscow.

The Russian defense exports increased from the early 1990s about four times, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute — think tank specializing in security issues. Most of this increase due to the recent years.

The majority of Russian products on the air show — the modernized version of the Soviet technology. For example, the Su-35 — one of the many descendants of the Su-27 first flew in 1977. The Ka-52, attracted the attention of an unusual pair of screws, one above the other and rotating in opposite directions — the new version of the model, first flew in 1982.

Russian planes and helicopters are still deprived of-the-art electronics present in the western competing products, and usually require more maintenance, which can cost a considerable amount. But they are reliable, well-tested and relatively inexpensive.

"This is a very attractive looking technology with very good opportunities, which is much cheaper than Western" — says the editor of the British newsletter Defence Analysis Francis Tews (Francis Tusa).

According to Mr. Pogosyan, he expects to sell outside of Russia hundreds of Su-35. He has positioned as a competitor to Western fighter aircraft of the Cold War — such as the F-15 of Boeing, F-16 and Lockheed Martin’s Eurofighter Typhoon, a consortium of European companies. Western aircraft manufacturers have already drawn attention to the Russian activity.

"They are investing in the development of fighters" and other products, said Chris Raymond (Chris Raymond), vice president of strategy and business development for defense units Boeing. According to Mr. Raymond, the most likely markets for the Russian aircraft should be regarded as the country is already using the old model (in particular India and Malaysia), but Russia has a clear global ambitions. "I expect that they will now actively look for buyers around the world," — he added.

Russia has to do more to return to the world market, due to the fact that China is increasing arms exports, and U.S. companies are seeking to increase sales abroad. Pentagon spending cuts due to the economic problems of the United States serves as a stimulus for the U.S. defense giants, including Lockheed and Boeing. As a result, according to sources in the defense industry, the Europeans and Russian have also begun to do more marketing of their products.

"Battle for the air continues to run high," — says Alberto de BENEDICTIS (Alberto de Benedictis), head of the British branch of the Italian aerospace company Finmeccanica, which, together with the British defense giant BAE Systems and the company European Aeronautic Defence & Space, the owner of Airbus, produces Eurofighter. According to Mr. de BENEDICTIS, the Persian Gulf, almost all countries now buy fighter jets, and it’s not the only regional arms race of its kind.

Russia sells its aircraft not just the military. Sales of Russian helicopters, maybe not different energy efficiency, but renowned for power in commercial markets are growing by more than 15% per year, with particularly great success they enjoyed in India and China, said Igor Wheat, deputy general director of the company "Helicopters of Russia "a member of the industrial holding Rostekhnadzor. Of course, American and European products, perhaps more modern. However, a spokesman Roman Kirillov emphasizes: "We are very competitive in price."

"Dry" has also created a new short-haul passenger jet called Superjet 100, which is already on sale in Russia and other countries — particularly in Mexico. However, most analysts still believe that the best Russian perspective on the world market are associated with the sector of low-cost hardware.

Western aerospace companies recognize that Russian products are cheaper. However, they believe that even the less developed countries is better to buy a more expensive Western techniques, because such transactions have additional benefits.

For example, the U.S. defense exports carried out with the participation of Washington, which is important for the transaction in the defense industry may involve economic and political incentives.

Purchase of U.S. arms may make possible the acquisition of American support, and access to U.S. technology, and other countries can not offer it, said senior vice president of Lockheed, Strategy and Business Development Patrick Dewar (Patrick Dewar). "So, you enter into a relationship with the U.S. government," — he said.


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