Procurement: August 24, 2005

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Russia is increasing its defense spending 22 percent in 2006, to $24 billion. This is largely due to the rising price of oil, which has nearly tripled from a few years ago. Most of the increase in the oil price comes from skyrocketing demand from China, and fear of oil shipment interruptions in Persian Gulf. The Russian military wants several years of large increases so they can hire more volunteer (contract) troops, and replace more aging Cold War error weapons and equipment. The Russian military is still a force consisting largely of unwilling and unskilled conscripts, using aging and outdated Cold War era weapons and equipment. Most of the troops in the Russian military are not capable of much beyond security duties. At the moment, the U.S. Army is larger, and much better trained and equipped, than the Russian Army. This is an intolerable situation for Russia, which has vast land borders, and many neighbors with current or potential disputes. Russia needs are larger, and more effective, army. But first they need a decade of larger budgets to pay for it.

 


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