Partner 2021: Serbia to buy two C295 airlifters and more H145M helicopters, shows new weapons and equipment

by Igor Bozinovski

Yugoimport's new Lazanski 8×8 ACV was unveiled at Partner 2021. (Igor Bozinovski)

Serbia will buy two C295 transport aircraft and a larger number of H145M helicopters from Airbus, Minister of Defence Nebojša Stefanović announced on the first day of the Partner 2021 international defence exhibition held in Belgrade from 11 to 14 October.

Partner 2021 unveiled new locally developed military equipment. This included Yugoimport's Lazanski 8×8 armoured combat vehicle (ACV), shown alongside two new versions of the Lazar III 8×8 ACV: the Lazar III A1 infantry fighting vehicle and Lazar III P infantry combat support armoured vehicle.

Serbia's new 8 km range Nova 145 (145 mm) anti-tank guided missile was shown integrated into a new version of the BOV M16 Miloš 4×4 multipurpose armoured vehicle featuring a remote operated weapon station armed with four Nova 145 containers and a modernised NSV 12.7×108 mm heavy machine gun. Exhibited next to it for the first time was the 2.5 km range Nova 145 portable fire-and-forget light anti-tank missile.


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India and Russia agree on new deals to strengthen defence ties

by Rahul Bedi

India and Russia deepened their long-standing defence alliance during Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to New Delhi on 6 December by inking two agreements to advance strategic and military co-operation.

These agreements comprised a INR51.24 billion (USD680 million) deal to produce in northern India 601,427 Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifles for the Indian armed forces, and the renewal of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military and Military-Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-M&MTC) until 2031.

Both accords were signed at the inaugural ‘2+2 dialogue' between the two countries' defence and foreign ministers ahead of a summit meeting between Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The deal to procure 7.62 mm AK-203 rifles through a Russian technology transfer was agreed in principle in 2019. The project will be undertaken by Indo-Russian Private Limited (IRPL) in Korwa, which operates as a joint venture (JV).

Industry officials told Janes that under the agreement, India would initially import 20,000 AK-203s from Russia for USD1,100 each over the next few months to meet the Indian Army's urgent operational needs.


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SAMI launches joint ventures with French industry as aerospace sector grows

by Charles Forrester

Saudi Arabia's SAMI is expanding its capabilities in aircraft component manufacture following the creation of JVs with Airbus and Figeac Aero. (Getty Images.)

Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) announced the creation of two joint ventures (JVs) with French industry on 4 December as part of the organisation's expansion into the aerospace industry.

The first JV agreement was signed with Airbus, covering maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) and service provision for military aircraft. The JV will be 51% owned by SAMI, and will be primarily based in Riyadh, with an additional presence at the Prince Sultan Air Base in Al-Kharj.

The JV is anticipated to commence operations in 2022 and will initially focus on providing support for the Airbus A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) and Airbus C295 aircraft. Support for additional platforms in the future may be considered, according to a statement from SAMI. The Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) currently operates six Airbus A330-200 MRTT aircraft, while the Ministry of Interior operates four C295Ws.


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BigBear.ai nears becoming public company

by Marc Selinger

US information technology business BigBear.ai, which announced in June that it would become a publicly traded company, said on 3 December that it expects to complete the process within days.

BigBear.ai said its merger with a publicly held special-purpose acquisition company will be completed on or about 7 December and that the combined entity, which will adopt the BigBear.ai name, will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on 8 December. The company declined to say why it will be listed on the NYSE instead of the Nasdaq as originally planned.

BigBear.ai intends to use the USD330 million in proceeds from the transaction to fund product development, acquisitions, and expanded sales and marketing. The company provides artificial intelligence, cloud migration, cyber security, data analytics, software development, and other services to the US Department of Defense, the US Intelligence Community, other US federal agencies, and commercial customers.

BigBear.ai was formed by US private equity firm AE Industrial Partners in February by combining NuWave Solutions and PCI Strategic Management.


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Serbia will buy two C295 transport aircraft and a larger number of H145M helicopters from Airbus, Mi...

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