Guwahati, Friday, December 16, 2011
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India, Russia sign 5 deals, including for Sukhoi jets

 MOSCOW, Dec 16 (IANS): India and Russia Friday signed five major agreements, including one on licensed production of an additional 42 Sukhoi combat planes and another on managing fly ash residue at thermal plants in Siberia.

The agreements were signed after three-hour-long delegation level talks between visiting Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev here.

Among the deals are a memorandum of understanding on enhancing cooperation and exchanges between anti-monopolies agencies and another to oversee the safety and quality issues by the drug standards and safety organisations to enhance trade in the pharma sector.

The two sides also signed an educational exchange programme to share experiences in the field of pedagogy and to form a joint working group to monitor the agreement's implementation.

The combat plane deal would mean that the Indian Air Force (IAF) will operate a total of 272 Sukhoi SU-30MKI jets, which will account for a major portion of its future fleet once the aging Soviet-origin MiG-21 fighter planes are phased out in five years.

The agreement was signed by Indian Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma, who is part of the prime minister's delegation, and Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation Director M.A. Dmitriev in the presence of Manmohan Singh and Medvedev.

The agreement on fly ash will facilitate development and application of technologies for the utilisation and safe management of the thermal plant residue and will include import of technologies from India.

It also envisages experience sharing, investment projects and mutual exchange of scientific personnel for managing of fly ash, an environmental pollutant and hazard.

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