Oct 18, 2013

Brazil builds Russian defense ties with Pantsir S1 missile deal

Brazilian officials said they expect to sign a contract by the middle of 2014 for short- to medium-range surface-to-air Pantsir S1 missile batteries and Igla-S shoulder-held missiles.
In December, Brazil bought 12 Mi-35 attack helicopters in its first purchase from Russia of military hardware. The rising Latin American power has traditionally obtained its weapons from the United States and Europe.
Brazil's Air Force has been looking for a decade to buy 36 fourth-generation jets to replace its aging fighter fleet, but Russia's Sukhoi Su-35 is not currently in the running for the contract worth more than $4 billion.
The selection process is already underway and will not be reopened but it's hoped President Dilma Rousseff will decide "soon" between Boeing Co.'s F-18 Super Hornet, the Rafale made France's Dassault Aviation SA and the Gripen offered by Sweden's Saab AB.
The purchase of anti-aircraft batteries is part of Brazil's effort to beef up air defenses ahead of global sports events the South American nation is preparing to host, next year's soccer World Cup, and Olympic Games to be held in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

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