The Russian MoD has signed a contract with the Beriev Aircraft Company to acquire six Beriev Be-200 amphibious planes making it the first such purchase by the Russian military, United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) said.
“The contract is worth 8.4 billion rubles [$268 million],” UAC said in a statement. “The first two planes will be basic Be-200ChS models, while the following four will be the Be-200PS version without firefighting equipment.”
The Defense Ministry may order eight more planes in the future, according to UAC.
Be-200 is the world's largest multipurpose amphibious aircraft, designed for firefighting, search and rescue, maritime patrol, cargo and passenger transportation. The plane can carry 12 tons of water or 7.5 tons of cargo, or up to 72 passengers.
At least five Be-200ChS firefighting planes are currently in service with the Russian Emergencies Ministry, according to Ria Novosti.