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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

China to Buy Russian Jets for $1.5Bln

Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said Thursday that Russia would deliver long-range transport jets and tanker refueling planes to China, Russian news agencies reported.

Ivanov announced the deal after meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi with his Chinese counterpart, Cao Gangchuan, Interfax reported, but no details were given.

Vedomosti reported that the deal, involving 38 Il-76 transport planes and Il-78 tankers, was worth $1.5 billion.

Earlier, Cao met with President Vladimir Putin and other top members of the Russian government.

Observers say the drills also gave Russia the chance to show off military equipment, since China has become the biggest foreign buyer of Russian arms and equipment in recent years.

Since the Soviet collapse, Moscow has built strong ties with Beijing, with both countries having a common goal to counter what they see as U.S. threats to their strategic and economic interests.