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Russian official: Russia aims to produce over 32,000 civilian drones annually by 2030

by Martin Fornusek January 6, 2024 1:18 PM 2 min read
A Meituan drone delivers takeout food to customers on December 18, 2021 in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province of China. (Illustrative purposes only) (VCG/VCG via Getty Images)
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Russia expects to produce 32,500 civilian drones annually by 2030 as part of a project approved last year, the country's first Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov said in a comment for the Russian state news agency TASS published on Jan. 6.

Backed by the Russian government at the end of December 2023, the "Unmanned Aircraft Systems" project aims to boost domestic drone production for various industry sectors.

Commercial drones have also been often repurposed for military tasks and used by both sides of the Russia-Ukraine war.

According to Belousov, the figure he provided does not include drones for educational purposes.

"It is almost three times higher than the current production volume. Furthermore, Russian-made drones will represent 70% of the market for these kinds of models," the official commented.

In 2023, Russian companies produced only about 6,000 units, TASS said, citing incomplete data from the Russian Industry and Trade Ministry.

The government plans to allocate 700 billion rubles ($7.7 billion) to "Unmanned Aircraft Systems" until the end of the decade, Belousov said.

Except for their commercial use, drones have played a major role on Ukrainian battlefields, both refitted civilian ones and military models.

Russia often employs Shahed-type kamikaze drones in strikes against Ukrainian cities, and other unmanned aerial vehicles are used by both sides to scout or attack enemy troops.

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky said that his country will produce 1 million drones in 2024.

Deadly drone arms race intensifies as Ukraine, Russia embrace the future of war
At this stage of a war that could last years more, both Ukraine and Russia are getting serious with their drone game: ramping up production while always looking to come up with new innovations.
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