Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Iranian Air Force lost budget battle with IRGC and missile program

"...Yet the air force was apparently left out of this budgetary windfall. The national armed forces (Artesh) will receive $2 billion this year, but only $5.3 million of that is to be spent on "refurbishing the air force fleet" -- a paltry amount when one considers that a single Su-30 costs $47-53 million. Similarly, only $3.5 million is earmarked for rebuilding air bases, and $8.3 million for overhauling army helicopters. The Iranian aviation industry received nothing from the budget this year, perhaps because it is expected to rechannel some of the money it made last year into overhaul projects.
In contrast, the IRGC has reportedly been allocated $4.9 billion, a 67 percent increase over the previous year, to which should be added the Basij Organization's budget of $357 million. Moreover, the General Staff of the Armed Forces will have a separate $684 million budget -- a 34 percent increase -- which includes $430 million to be set aside for "improving defensive capabilities." This budget can benefit the IRGC or the Artesh. Currently, Iran sources a majority of its arms and military equipment locally, so the restrictions on foreign purchases are not as crippling to other branches as they are to the IRIAF."

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