Russia said Thursday that it had completed negotiations with Turkey for the sale of an S-400 air defence missile system, with delivery scheduled for late 2019.
“Practically speaking, the contract is entering the phase of realisation,” said Vladimir Kozhin, a presidential aide who oversees matters of military cooperation. “All parameters, all technologies, the entire deal has been agreed.”
“All aspects have been resolved over the past few days,” Kozhin said. “The contract will consist of two parts financially: part of it will be paid by Turkey and part through a credit provided by Russia.”
“The first deliveries are likely to begin at the end of 2019, beginning of 2020,” Kozhin was reported as saying by Russian news agencies.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan had discussed the deal during Putin’s visit to Ankara last week.
The agreement to purchase the latest Russian surface-to-air missile defence batteries is Turkey’s most significant deal with a non-NATO military supplier and comes amid strained relations between Ankara and several Western countries.
The deal has been valued at about $2 billion according to reports.
Turkey’s decision to buy the Russian system has raised eyebrows of other NATO members, with the Pentagon saying previously that “generally it´s a good idea” to buy equipment that is inter-operable with the military alliance´s other systems.
Besides Turkey, Russia is also in talks to sell the system to Saudi Arabia, with Kozhin saying Thursday that both sides were aiming to finalise the remaining issues on that contract before the end of the year.