AK-203 assault rifles production to begin by year-end: Russian official

Over 6.1 lakh AK-203 assault rifles will be manufactured in India with technology transfer from Russia

October 18, 2022 10:11 pm | Updated 10:11 pm IST - GANDHINAGAR

AK-203 assault rifle

AK-203 assault rifle | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The Indo-Russian joint venture at Korwa in Uttar Pradesh will start manufacturing AK-203 assault rifles by 2022 end, according to a senior Russian official.

“The Korwa Ordnance Factory is ready to start manufacturing Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifles by the end of 2022. Our plans include 100% localisation of the production of legendary Russian assault rifles in India,” said Rosoboronexport Director General Alexander Mikheev. “In addition, in the future, the joint venture may increase production and modernise production facilities to manufacture advanced rifles based on the Kalashnikov assault rifle platform.”

The production which was originally scheduled to begin early this year has been slightly delayed due to the war in Ukraine.

Under an over ₹5,000 crore contract, over 6.1 lakh AK-203 assault rifles will be manufactured in India with technology transfer from Russia.

During the exhibition, Rosoboronexport will discuss with the Indian side the production and supply of AK-203 for the armed forces and other law enforcement agencies of the country, Kalashnikov said in a statement.

A delegation from Rosoboronexport, a subsidiary of the Rostec State Corporation, is taking part in Defexpo-2022 as a co-founder of Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL), the Indo-Russian joint venture established to produce Ak-203 assault rifles in India.

The IRRPL was set up in 2019 jointly between erstwhile OFB [now Advanced Weapons and Equipment India Limited and Munitions India Limited of India and Rosoboronexport and concern Kalashnikov of Russia.

On the AK-203 rifles, Kalashnikov said they had retained all the advantages of the traditional AK series — reliability, durability and ease of maintenance. Kalashnikov A-200-series assault rifles are fitted with integral Picatinny rails for convenient and easy mounting of sights and tactical accessories for effective use of weapons in various conditions. In particular, they feature a redesigned fire selector and a modified receiver cover

As reported by The Hindu earlier, the full-scale production of the rifles is expected to be reached within 2-3 years. As per contractual terms, the first 70,000 AK-203 rifles will be produced in India with a phased increase in the extent of localisation from 5% to 70%. The remaining rifles will be produced with 100% localisation.

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