Home- Stories -Veitnam Diversifies its Arms Purchases, Reduces Dependance on Russia

Veitnam Diversifies its Arms Purchases, Reduces Dependance on Russia

Our Bureau - : Dec 6, 2022 - : 11:37 am

Countries like India, Japan and Israel could emerge as potential exporters of defence equipment to Vietnam as the country seeks to move away from depending on weapons from traditional suppliers such as Russia and the U.S.

From 1995 to 2015, Russia provided 90 per cent of Vietnam’s arms procurements, but from 2016 to 2021, Russia’s share dropped to 63 per cent. Vietnam’s desire to deepen strategic relations with the United States may be encouraging it to reduce dependence on Russian arms, but it also follows the broader regional trend of diversifying suppliers.

Recently, Vietnam has turned to India, Japan and Israel for its defence requirements.

Last June, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh paid a three-day visit to Hanoi to strengthen defence and security ties with Vietnam’s National Defence General Phan Van Giang. The two sides discussed regional security issues and signed agreements to expand their defence engagement.

“The two defence ministers also signed the ‘Joint Vision Statement on India-Vietnam Defence Partnership towards 2030’, which will significantly enhance the scope and scale of existing defence cooperation,” an official at the India’s Ministry of Defence said.

India and Vietnam also signed an MoU, focused on mutual logistics support to enable the two countries to use each other’s military bases to repair and replenish supplies. According to the official, the agreement is “the first such major agreement which Vietnam has signed with any country.” This arrangement will mainly benefit the Indian Navy as it ramps up its profile in the Indo-Pacific. Both the ministers also agreed for early finalisation of $US500 million Defence Line of Credit to Vietnam. Implementation of the projects shall add substantially to Vietnam’s Defence capabilities.

Late last year, Japan and Vietnam late last year signed a deal enabling exports of Japanese-made defence equipment and technology to the Southeast Asian country.

Since the Vietnam – Israel Defence memorandum of understanding (MOU) in 2015, Israel has been the second largest military supplier to Vietnam. Israel is also one of the few countries that is active in transferring military technology to produce modern weapons for Vietnam, including the Galil ACE 31/32 assault rifles production line.

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