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Russia's 2014 arms sales top US$15b: Putin

[MOSCOW] Russia sold more than US$15 billion worth of arms in 2014, President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday, adding that new signed orders stood at nearly US$14 billion.

Russia is the world's second-largest arms exporter after the United States.

Mr Putin also said Russia exported military equipment to more than 60 countries last year, when its ties with the West hit a rocky bottom over the conflict in Ukraine.

"Russia will expand its presence on such prospective markets and the Asia-Pacific region, Africa, Latin America and the Carribbean," Mr Putin told a meeting at the Kremlin.

"Exports of high-tech military products is important for Russia, especially amid the difficult geopolitical situation. It is important for updating the production of the defence sector... and solving many social issues."