The deal is a breakthrough given that a number of earlier projects collapsed during the discussions stage because Bell Helicopter preferred to avoid giving the green light to its choppers being assembled abroad, Kommersant said.
According to the newspaper, the first three Bell 407GXP copters are due to be completed in Yekaterinburg before the end of this year.
At first, the helicopters are expected to be used for production certification, after which they will be purchased by the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency Rosaviatsiya, which, in turn, plans to supply them to a flight school.
The helicopters could also be of interest to the Russian Interior Ministry and businessmen, the newspaper said, referring to a possible 17-perocent discount on the Russian-made Bell choppers as the domestic production means they are not liable to import duties.
Unlike the Bell 407GX copter, the Bell 407GXP model has an additional 50 pounds of payload capability; also, it introduces the new M250 Rolls-Royce engine to improve performance and fuel efficiency.