Russia and China will sign a contract to create a joint Russian-Chinese heavy helicopter AHL (Advanced Heavy Lifter) "in the coming days"
"The contract will be signed in the coming days. Only technical protocol formalities are left," he said.
First Deputy Chief of the Russian Government Staff Sergei Prikhodko told reporters earlier that Russian Helicopters and China’s Avicopter are expected to sign a framework contract for the development of the AHL (Advanced Heavy Lifter) helicopter.
"It is planned to sign the framework contract and all the sub-contracts on November 7, during the 23rd regular meeting of the Russian and Chinese heads of government," he said in reply to a TASS question.
According to Prikhodko, Russian Helicopters and China’s Avicopter had 24 rounds of talks on a would-be contract in a period from May 2014 to October 2018. In May, the sides initialed all the sub-contracts and finished the work on a master contract and initialed its text in October.
The agreement on the development of the AHL helicopter was signed between Russia and China in June 2016.
Under the agreement, Russian Helicopters Group, part of Russia’s Rostec state hi-tech corporation, will make investments in the program in the form of technologies and design separate systems of the helicopter, while China will be responsible for implementing the program as a whole.
In the summer of 2017, Director for International Cooperation and Regional Policy at Russia’s Rostec Corporation Viktor Kladov said that at least 200 AHL helicopters would be built under the contract.
According to data presented earlier, the helicopter will have a maximum takeoff weight of 38.2 tonnes, a service ceiling of 5,700 meters, a range of 630 km (391 miles) and a maximum speed of 300 km/h (186 mph). The AHL’s lifting capacity will stand at 10 tons for internal cargo carriage and at 15 tonnes for underslung cargo.