Eighteen Su-30K fighter jets that India returned to Russia, probably will not be sold to Vietnam, but instead is Ethiopia.
Deputy Group Director arms exporter Rosoboron Export, Alexander Mikheyev, said that Russia is negotiating to supply 18 Su-30K fighters to Ethiopia.
Eighteen multipurpose fighters were returned to India to replace the Russian fighter Su-30MKI is newer.
“We are in consultation with Ethiopia for the supply of the fighter. They have proposed a variant to modernize, enhance combat capability as well as the specification and provide additional tactics the rocket – to – land/sea more advanced,” said Mikheyev said.
The Rosoboronexport officials also stressed that, at present, four Su-30K first being repaired at a local aircraft factory.
“Just got the proposal from customers and financial resources, we are ready to upgrade and modernize all 18 Su-30K aircraft within 4-6 months,” he said Mikheyev.
Complete 18 Su-30K aircraft the IAF was not used in 10 years time, then returned to Russia. This aircraft was delivered to some 5 factories in Belarus to repair and upgrade, before being sold to 3rd party without giving back to Russia to avoid import taxes.
There has been much speculation about the fate of 18 Su-30K and its destination. There has been news that Belarus wants to buy the whole lot and that Russian planes do not extend credit to them (Belarus) to purchase the Group’s Irkut aircraft, then, a few other sources revealed that customer Nan is Vietnam after Vietnam military mission sent to check out a few planes.
Since then, no further information about the fate of this 18 Su-30K. However, the recent disclosure of Rosoboronexport Deputy Director General that Vietnam will not be a customer of 18 Su-30K aircraft, may be negotiated by the two parties, but does not meet requirements of each other, or maybe, Vietnam will not buy old planes instead is buying new aircraft Su-30 at a point.
Source: Baodatviet (Vietnam) – July 3, 2013.