Unable to repair Croatia’s MiGs, Ukraine blames Russia


February 7, 2018 – Fort Russ News –

– Igor Skripach, in Rueconomics.ru, translated by Tom Winter –

MiG 21 in Croatian colors

There are just MiGs, defective ones, at that: Kiev waving “the hand of the Kremlin” in the hope of deceiving the Croats

Ukraine accuses Russia of interfering with business with Croatia in repairing MiG-21 fighters, thus covering the noncompetitiveness of its defense industry. This opinion was expressed by independent political analyst Alexander Asafov. …

In Kiev, they assert one should look to Russian tracks in the fact that Croatia is returning four repaired MiG-21 fighters because of malfunctions.

Previously, Croatian media, referring to a source in the country’s military department, said that Croatia intends to return fighters which, after repairs at Ukrainian enterprises, had fuel leaks and malfunctioning navigation equipment.

“To date, there is no official claim or complaint of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Croatia from SC Ukrspetsexport, and we are forced to state that the appearance of untrue information is due only to unfair competition from Russia,” they state at Ukrspetsexport.

They also noted that the Croatian Ministry of Defense, violating the EU sanctions regime, preferred to conclude repair contracts with the Russian Helicopters holding company.

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Meanwhile, the District Court of Zagreb is considering a case of corruption in the repair of Croatian Air Force aircraft in Ukraine. The Office for Combating Organized Crime of the Croatian Justice Department accuses several people of giving and receiving bribes in the purchase and repair of 12 MiG-21 fighters purchased at the Odessa Aircraft Repair Plant for the Croatian Air Force.

Lying in ruins
The market for technical maintenance of Soviet aircraft is rather narrow, and there are several countries competing in it, Alexander Asafov explains: “Russia – with great advantage, also Ukraine, and a number of countries of the former Warsaw bloc.”

The degradation of the Ukrainian defense industry continues today, and even such a simple task as modernization of the fuel system on these aircrafts can not be carried out in Ukraine says the expert.

“The reasons are the deepest corruption and the absence of any competence, and all the statements about the Kremlin’s hand is an attempt to somehow explain what is really happening – that the Ukrainian defense industry is in ruins and unable to fulfill external commercial orders that would bring currency into the treasury,” Asafov said, adding that Ukraine will continue to lose this market, and sell off the remnants of the Soviet legacy.

Kiev today fundamentally breaks all ties with Moscow, even to the detriment of its industry.

Croatia’s Unsuccessful Ukrainian experience
As for Zagreb’s contacts with Russian Helicopters, Croatia, according to the expert, has no other options. The Croats wanted to save with the help of Ukraine, which turned out to be a problem, and now, if Croatia wants to receive the MiGs, it will have to work with Russian Helicopters, regardless of the sanctions lists. 

Prospects for business cooperation between Russia and Ukraine in the sphere of military production Alexander Asafov assesses skeptically.

“The Russian leadership has repeatedly stated its readiness for business contacts with the Ukrainian side, provided that their use will not lead to the death of civilians, but we see how Kiev has consistently cut off ties with Russia in all areas, economically destroying its enterprises. This is a matter of principle for the current government, “the expert said.

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