The Algerian Air Force has asked to evaluate the Sukhoi Su-35 multi-role fighter jet in preparation for the possible acquisition of at least 10 of the aircraft at a cost of up to $900 million, a Russian defence industrial source has revealed.
According to a report published by Russian language business daily Kommersant, the Algerian acquisition is one of the upcoming $6-$7 billion worth of global arms deal Russia expects to sign with customers which include Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt and Pakistan following the successful debut of Russian military hardware in Syrian counter-terrorism operations.
“In Syria, we achieved two goals. On the one hand, we demonstrated the combat capabilities of our military technology and attracted the attention of customers. On the other hand we tested more than half of our fleet in combat conditions,” the unnamed source told Kommersant.
He said Algeria became interested in the Su-35 after its debut in Syria and had asked to test the aircraft. The North African military power has since indicated it could acquire up to 10 Su-35s after expressing satisfaction with the performance of the aircraft.
In December, the Russian government confirmed that Algeria had ordered 12 Sukhoi Su-32 strike aircraft (export version of the Su-34) at a cost of up to $600 million. The North African military giant is reported to be pondering on whether to exercise the option of acquiring six more Su-32s to bring its total order to 18.
Several weeks ago, the Russian ambassador to Algeria confirmed that the country had increased its order of Mi-28 NE Night Hunter helicopters to 42.
Last year, Algeria took delivery of six Mi-26T heavy-lift helicopters (another eight are due for delivery), a batch of Pantsir-S1 AD systems and a consignment of new T-90SA tanks. Russia also upgraded Algerian Army BMP-1 Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFV) to BMP-2M standard in deals that earned Moscow a total of $800 million from Algeria.