Pravda reports that the Court of Arbitration of the Udmurtia Republic has declared JSC Izhmash—manufacturers of the legendary Kalishnikov rifle—bankrupt. Old news? Apparently so. “In 2011, JSC Izhmash and Russian Technologies state-run corporation developed the concept for restructurization [ness]. A new company called Scientific and Industrial Association Izhmash (NPO Izhmash), a branch company of Russian Technologies, appeared as a result of the work. All contractual obligations and personnel were re-registered with the new company. The basic activities will be delivered to NPO Izhmash before the end of the first quarter of 2012.” Yes, well, just because some papers have been shuffled doesn’t mean that Izhmash is alive and well and living in Udmurtiastan. As Chevy Chase might have said, Izhmash is still dead. And looking deaderer by the day . . .
Russian news agencies said in January that the defense ministry was not planning any orders with Izhmash within the scope of the state defense order for 2012. It was also said that the new AK-12 assault rifle was nothing more but a bluff.
However, Izhmash officials said that the AK-12 was designed for export purposes to meet all modern requirements to small arms. An order from the state would give the company an opportunity to launch the serial production of the AK-12 for the Russian Armed Forces.
Translation: in Russia, AK12 owns you. Here’s the bottom line via hurriyetdailynews.com:
Izhmash, which has 5.3 billion ruble loan debts, registered 2.4 billion rubles of loss in 2011. Its production volume decreased by 45.5 percent last year.
More optimistically (back to Pravda, of course):
The state tests of the new rifle may begin at the end of 2012 or in the beginning of 2013. Russia’s Interior Ministry has already evinced great interest in the new product.
“Developing a new family of automatic arms is a priority for Izhmash to retrieve the world share of the market,” Maksim Kuzyuk, the General Director of the Scientific and Industrial Association said.
I guess the Evil Empire business just ain’t what it used to be. Now, someone get the Freedom Group on the line . . .