ECONOMYNEXT - Russia is close to wrapping up a deal to sell a Gepard 3.9 class ships to Sri Lanka, a media report said, a media report said amid claims by the island's administration that the country was overburdened by foreign debt.
"The draft contract is practically coordinated with the Sri Lankan side, discussion of certain technical details is in the final stage," Russia-based Sputninews.com quoted an un-named source as saying at a maritime and aerospace exhibition in Malaysia.
Sputnik earlier quoted Deputy Director of Russia's Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) Mikhail Petukhov said discussion on the warship deal was ongoing.
The contract value was not mentioned but Vietnam bought two Gepard 3.9 class ships for 350 million dollars in a deal struck in 2006.
No details were available on financing, but Russia has provided suppliers credit in the past.
The deal comes as Sri Lanka claims the country has too much foreign debt.
Sri Lanka is also planning to acquire at least three off-shore patrol vessels from Colombo Dockyard for around 180 million dollars.
The offshore patrol vessels are seen as being required for maritime surveillance duties in Sri Lanka's exclusive economic zone. (Colombo/Mar25/2017)