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On June, 25-30 the 5th International Forum ARMY 2019 was held in Russia. The annual event took place at the specially built Patriot exhibition centre near Moscow as well as Alabino testing range and Kubinka air field nearby.

The organizers claim to reach the record figure of 1 million+ visitors and participants from 120 nations with 41 high-ranking delegations and 63 foreign embassies representatives. The total number of international military delegates exceeded 700.

The exhibition ground has covered almost 260,000 sq.m. with 361 live samples of military units from the Russian Armed Forces. Over 1,300 enterprises have shown 27,200+ exhibits. Apart of the Russian Federation, 10 countries arranged their national expositions, namely Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, India, Kazakhstan, China, Pakistan, Turkey, Thailand and RSA. In addition, over 100 defence enterprises from 14 nations including Latvia, UAE, Iran and France extra to the mentioned above were presented separately.

A variety of defence products have been exhibited for the first time, including Vityaz (Warrior) S-350 missile air defence system, Pantsir-SM gun-missile ADC, Lotos 2S42 self-propelled artillery unit, Drok 2S41 82-mm self-propelled mortar, RKhM-8 nuclear, chemical and biological reconnaissance vehicle, Typhoon 4×4 light mine-clearing vehicle, Okhotnik (Hunter) and Korsar UAVs among the many.

Over 300 units of defence equipment including aircraft and armour took part in the live demonstration and firing. Part of the event was going under the umbrella of the ERA Innovation technopolis – a new structure of MoD to apply latest scientific research in the sphere of defence.

High Precision Weapons Holding was awarded with the Forum Grand Prix for a new firing complex combining 15 galleries for round-a-clock firing of small arms and related weapons on distances from 50 to 2,000 m.

Within the forum framework the Russian MoD signed 46 state contracts with 27 enterprises on total sum over 1 trillion rubles (around €15 billion) including Su-57 5th generation aviation complex, the latest version of Mi-28NM round-a-clock attack helicopter, Yasen-M (Ash tree) nuclear submarines of project 885M, large conventional submarines of project 677 Lada, Iskander-M missile systems with smart cruise missiles and long-range S-400ADS among the many.

It is interesting to note that initially the ARMY 2019 Forum was scheduled for September being moved several months ago three months ahead – coincidently  a few days ahead of G-20 in Osaka.

It is still not clear if the ARMY Forum remains an annual event or will be shifted for a bi-annual schedule. At any case, it remains the most important event for the Russian defence industry.

Yury Laskin