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Faced with crippling Western sanctions that have severely hampered its arms exports, Russia is seeking to bypass these restrictions by manufacturing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), drones, and other smaller weapon systems in India. This strategic move aims to revive Russia’s flagging weapons export business by utilizing India’s manufacturing capabilities and tapping into its growing defence market.

Russia’s defence industry has been hit hard by Western sanctions imposed in response to its invasion of Ukraine. These sanctions have significantly curtailed Russia’s ability to export its weapons systems, traditionally a major source of revenue for the country’s economy.

To circumvent these sanctions, Russia is exploring partnerships with Indian private-sector companies to manufacture its weapons in India. This would allow Russia to continue supplying its traditional weapons buyers while avoiding direct sanctions on its exports.
Russia’s decision to partner with Indian companies stems from India’s growing prominence in the global defence manufacturing sector. India has made significant strides in developing its indigenous defence capabilities and has emerged as a major exporter of defence products.

For India, partnering with Russia presents an opportunity to further strengthen its defence manufacturing capabilities and expand its global market reach. Moreover, India’s long-standing partnership with Russia in the defence sector provides a solid foundation for this collaboration.

Russia’s offer to share its technology with Indian companies is likely to attract significant interest from Indian defence manufacturers. The transfer of technology (ToT) would enable Indian companies to produce advanced weapons systems, enhancing their competitiveness in the international market.

While India has been expanding its defence exports, it still lags behind major players like the United States, Russia, and China. Partnering with Russia could provide India with a significant boost in its defence export ambitions.

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