India, Russia set up joint venture to build helicopters in India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) with Russian President Vladimir Putin ahead of the Indo-Russia Annual Summit in Goa on Oct 15, 2016.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) with Russian President Vladimir Putin ahead of the Indo-Russia Annual Summit in Goa on Oct 15, 2016. PHOTO: AFP

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India and Russia announced a joint venture to build Russian Kamov helicopters in India after summit talks on Saturday (Oct 15) between President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Indian military officials have said the plan is to build at least 200 helicopters the defence forces need, and is part of Mr Modi's drive to build a defence industrial base in India.

The two sides signed the pact in India's seaside resort of Goa, on the sidelines of a BRICS summit of emerging nations.

Separately, the two countries on Saturday also signed a deal to pave the way for a group led by Russian oil major Rosneft to acquire India's Essar Oil.

The group will acquire Essar Oil in a deal worth US$12 billion to US$13 billion, including debt, two sources privy to the deal told Reuters.

Russian lender VTB will give Essar US$3.9 billion in credit for debt reconstruction, VTB Chief Executive Andrei Kostin said on Saturday.