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Russia to Sign Afghan Mi-17 Option by Year-End

RIA Novosti

12:10 17/05/2012 MOSCOW, May 17 (RIA Novosti) - A delivery schedule for an option order of Mil Mi-17 transport helicopters for the Afghanistan Armed Forces will be signed by Russia and the U.S. by the end of the year, Russia's defense exports holding Rosoboronexport said on Thursday.

Rosoboronexport signed a $367.5 milliondeal with the United States in May 2011 for delivery of 21 Mi-17V5s, which the U.S. will transfer to Afghanistan. According to U.S. data, the deal could be worth up to $900 million including spares and servicing.

The contract also includes an option for delivery of a further 12 Mi-17s.

"In February this year, we signed an additional protocol for delivery of two helicopters as part of the option deal, and we plan to deliver ten more by the end of this year," said Rosoboronexport's head of helicopter exports, Grigory Kozlov.

Rosoboronexport is counting on further development of military-technical cooperation with the United States, including with regard to sales to third nations, he said.

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