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Russia's New MiG-35 May Replace Vietnam's Aging Fighter Jets

© Flickr / mashleymorganMiG-35
MiG-35 - Sputnik International
Russia may sell new MiG-35 fighter jets to Vietnam as a replacement for its aging fighter jets, as Southeast Asian countries are expressing growing interest in the planes.

Russia's MiG-35 multirole fighter jets may be coming to Vietnam, where the useful life of the country's third-generation MiG-21 fighter jets is coming to an end, the head of MiG aircraft manufacturer Sergei Korotkov told RIA Novosti.

The MiG-35 is a new multirole fighter which includes fifth-generation information and sighting systems. According to Korotkov, Southeast Asia is an "interesting region" for the aircraft manufacturer when it comes to prospective sales.

"According to our evaluation, there are definite prospects for MiG-35s in Vietnam, where the expected life of MiG-21 fighter jets is coming to an end," Korotkov told RIA Novosti.

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Korotkov added that interest in MiG-35 planes is growing in India, in part because French Rafale fighter jet shipments are limited. The purchase of MiG-35s to replace India's aging fighter jet fleet is being discussed in India's professional circles, according to Korotkov.

"Unlike the 'classic' MiG-29, from which the MiG-35 inherited its aerodynamic concepts, the new machine is multirole. It can employ high-precision weaponry on any targets, air, ground or sea. It can even perform some functions which were earlier entrusted to reconnaissance planes," Korotkov added.

MiG is currently modernizing India's MiG-29 planes in collaboration with the local aerospace industry to the MiG-29UPG standard under a $1.2 billion 2010 contract. MiG is also supplying MiG-29K carrier-based fighter jets to the country.

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