MOSCOW, BM, ($1=74.31 Russian Rubles) – Russia’s TASS news agency claims that at the upcoming international military exhibition MAKS-2021, Moscow will present to the world a new, promising, and light fighter, which will be a real competition to the American stealth fighter F-35. TASS quotes the words of Oleg Panteleev, uttered on July 12 in front of journalists. Pantaleev is the executive director of the branch agency “Airport”.
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“Teasers in English, the regions that the pilots represented in the video published by Rostec – all this shows that the domestic light fighter enters the battle with the American F-35 in foreign markets. I am sure that the demonstration of the aircraft in MAKS-2021 will have It is not in vain that Rosoboronexport invited more than 120 delegations from 65 countries to the exhibition,” he said.
So far, however, there is almost no information about the new Russian fighter. The only information available is similar interviews in the Russian media and rumors among journalists and the public in Russia. What is persistently circulating in the Russian press is the low visibility of the new Russian fighter, in various ranges, very good thrust-to-weight ratio, significantly improved [compared to what – order] combat load, and integrated advanced aviation weapons.
Pantaleev believes that the new fighter will be a great “tandem partner” of the heavy Russian Su-57 fighter. It is assumed that the new Russian light fighter will also be manufactured by Sukhoi. These speculations are due to information that was spread a few months ago that Russia is working on a single-engine version of a fighter with a low radar signature and supersonic speed.
BulgarianMilitary.com has information from the United Aircraft Corporation in Russia that Moscow is indeed preparing to present a new aircraft on the first day of the exhibition. Whether it is the same person who speaks Pantaleev will become clear on July 20, when the exhibition MAKS-2021 opens.
However, Russia has provided quite contradictory information so far, even about the condition of the new Su-57 fighter. As we know, its serial production began last year, and the first was delivered in late 2020 in the Southern Military District of the country. For example, according to the Vietnamese publication Soha, Russia’s “fifth-generation” Su-57 fighters may be affected by the budget crisis in Russia.
According to publications in Vietnam, the planned five fighters that were to be produced and delivered to the Russian Air Force in 2021 may be only three. Some experts predict a worse forecast – not three, but two planes will receive Russia by the end of 2021. Vietnam is closely monitoring the condition of the Russian Su-57, as it is assumed that the country has a serious interest in buying it.
The main problem is the unfavorable economic situation in Russia, which is currently causing a budget crisis. The publication says that Moscow can and has the opportunity to produce weapons, but the lack of finances will stop the production of fighter jets.
Some analysts say that the deepening economic climate in the country, financial sanctions from Europe and the United States, the low price of the ruble, and the budget crisis will completely stop the implementation of the contract for the production and purchase of 76 fighters by the Russian Ministry of Defense.
This crisis is a deepening problem in recent years, which has been left out of the “patriotic and populist” statements of Russian politicians, including President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin.
The serial production of the T-14 Armata tank was the first signal that had to be a clear view of the future of Russian military production. If at the moment, Russian financiers and experts claim that the Su-57 is the first victim of the budget crisis, this is not true, as the T-14 Armata is the first victim of a lack of funding.
So far, only 20 tanks of this model have been produced, which started almost three years ago. A total of 100 pieces from the first batch of mass-produced ones should come out, but even here, it is not sure when this will happen. Compared to its competitors in international markets, the price of this Russian tank is not high and completely bearable. However, production is slow, there is a lack of timely funding, and there are unknowns about its output.
Russia will try to save this project by buying the manufactured T-14 Army for its Army. Still, such signals give uncertainty to Moscow’s international partners, which may at some point terminate contracts for the purchase of Russian weapons. This, like a domino effect, could bury quite ambitious Russian military projects.
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