The meeting between Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev will take place on March 3 in Baku. The main topic of the talks will be the settlement of military-technical cooperation between the two countries, reports “Kommersant”. According to the newspaper, due to the falling energy prices Baku faces difficulties to fulfill its payment obligations for the previously signed weapons contracts. According to Russian military expert Ivan Konovalov, there’s a very simple issue: Russia rightly wants Azerbaijan to pay back for the supplied arms.
“The solvency of Azerbaijan due to the fall in oil prices has taken a beating, but the Russian defense industry is functioning, the military equipments are supplied to Azerbaijan, the contracts have been signed for a long time, and Baku has to pay the bills,” told RUSARMINFO Ivan Konovalov. The expert notes that the Cold War period, when the countries received free of charge weapons, has already gone, and Russia should be paid back for its military supplies. “Russia is unlikely to reduce the price of weapons for Azerbaijan so that it could meet its obligations before the Russia Federation. Paying back by installments is a possible option. But if Baku is not able to meet its obligations, then Moscow will sell these weapons to other countries, so as not to incur economic losses,” said Ivan Konovalov.
In this context, the issue of the Russian loan to Armenia on the arms purchase will be raised. But there won’t be any change in the Russian position. In addition, in the case of Baku’s inability to obtain Russian weapons, Armenia won’t increase its military advantage, as Baku has already paid for the most of Russian arms. In 2010-2014, Baku and Moscow have signed several contracts on the purchase of offensive weapons for a total of $ 4 billion. The parties agreed on the acquisition of two divisions of anti-aircraft missile systems S-300PMU-2, several batteries of antiaircraft missile complexes “Tor -2ME”, about 100 combat and transport helicopters, 100 T-90S tanks and 100 armored units of BMP-3, 18 self-propelled artillery “MSTA-C”, and 18 heavy flamethrower systems “TOS-1”.