Gov’t reviews new plan to boost defense industry

By: Mushvig Mehdiyev

The Defense Industry Ministry has submitted a plan to the government on the establishment of new production facilities and purchasing of manufacturing technologies.

Yaver Jamalov, Defense Industry Minister, said the defense industry in Azerbaijan has considerably developed over the last years.

“Significant works have been done to provide the army with modern weapons and decreased the external dependence over the recent years,” said Jamalov, at an event dedicated to the professional holiday of the defense industry employees, on December 17.

Jamalov added that over 50 new production facilities were built between 2007 and 2014. The volume of the overall production outruns the same indicator in 2010 by 2.4 times, according to the minister.

“Facilities of the Ministry manufactured and delivered mortars, machine guns, unmanned devices “Aerostar” and other defense products,” Jamalov said.

The production ventures also made capsules, which decreased the dependence on the manufacture of munitions. Moreover, the building of the combat system for AGS-30 automated mortars of 30 millimeters caliber was finished and recommended for mass production. Ammunition for mortars and A-100 night vision sets were also produced, along with the launching of a factory test to make of the sniper rifles.

Farhad Jafarguliyev, Director General of Aggregate Production Union, said the Baku machine-building factory is now realizing the program of the modernization of two various combat systems. He added that the products, manufactured in the factory, are exported to Russia and other countries.

Mubariz Aghayev, Director General of Dalga Scientific Production Center, said repair works are currently being carried out on 37 weapons at the facility. The facility also masters the production of two defense systems and utilizes the unserviceable weapons.

Azerbaijan is developing its defense industry at a high pace. It has showcased different domestically-made military equipment in many exhibitions worldwide. The country displayed 168 types of defense products at the latest international defense industry exhibition ADEX-2014 in Baku on September 11- 13.

Azerbaijan is the top country in the South Caucasus for its military expenditure. The country’s military budget for the next year is $5 billion, while about $3.8 billion was allocated to military in 2014.

Global Firepower Index 2014 ranked Azerbaijan 50th among 106 countries by noting that the country can call upon hundreds of thousands of reserves.