Russian arms exports are likely to increase by $700m-$800m in 2009, according to the state arms exporter Rosoboronexport.

In 2008 the company sold $6.75bn worth of weaponry and its defence order portfolio was worth $27bn.

Of all the Russian weaponry, combat aircraft occupied a 50% share in sales succeeded by air defence systems, military equipment for land forces, and naval equipment.

Rosoboronexport’s official Valery Varlamov said Russia exports weapons to about 80 countries.

He also said the Chinese and the Indian share of the exports decreased to 16%-18% last year and may decrease even further, but Russia is expanding its presence in the Middle East and Latin America.

Russia has focused on the joint development of weaponry and defence technologies with India and China.

Besides developing BrahMos, the supersonic cruise missile, Russia and India have agreed to develop a medium-haul military transport plane and a fifth-generation fighter jet together.