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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 July 2006, 14:52 GMT 15:52 UK
India agrees Russia warship order
The Russian-built frigate INS Talwar
India took delivery of its first Russian stealth frigate in 2003
India has agreed to buy three more stealth warships and 28 cruise missiles from Russia for more than $1bn.

The frigates will be delivered in five years time, Indian Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee told reporters after the cabinet had cleared the deal.

Delhi purchased three similar frigates from Russia in the 1990s.

India remains one of the world's biggest arms importers and has one of the largest navies, with at least 25 warships and 16 submarines.

Earlier deal

The warships on order weigh 4,000 tonnes each and cannot be easily tracked by radar.

Mr Mukherjee said contracts still had to be signed with Russian builders for the new frigates.

He said the decision to buy the frigates was a follow-up order to warships bought in the 1990s.

India's navy took delivery of its first Russian-built "stealth" warship in 2003.

The INS Talwar was the first of three Krivak class frigates commissioned from Russia in another deal worth $1bn.

Military officials have said in the future India hopes to build most naval ships at its own shipyards, although Delhi will still buy equipment from foreign countries, particularly Russia.


SEE ALSO
India receives 'stealth' warship
18 Jun 03 |  South Asia

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