MOSCOW, January 15 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will issue a $1 billion loan to Bangladesh for purchases of Russian-made arms and military equipment, Russian President Vladimir Putin said after talks with Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday.
“Russia…will allocate a $1 billion loan to Bangladesh for purchases of Russian arms and military equipment,” Putin said.
Bangladesh is likely to use the cash to buy MiG-29SMT fighter jets and upgrade an earlier batch of MiG-29s, as well as buying BTR-80 armored vehicles and Mi-171 military helicopters, Russian military analyst Igor Korotchenko said.
The deal is part of an array of agreements signed during Putin’s talks with Hasina in Moscow on Tuesday. The two countries also settled on a project to jointly build Bangladesh’s first nuclear power plant and signed memorandums of understanding in various spheres, including anti-terrorism, justice, healthcare and education.
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.