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Russian company supplies military with microchips despite denying it – Voice of America

Sunday, 7 April 2024, 17:13
Russian company supplies military with microchips despite denying it – Voice of America
Photo: RBK

A Russian microcircuits production company AO PKK Milandr continued to supply the Armed Forces of Russia with microchips at least a few months after the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine despite the CEO’s public denials of any ties with the Russian military.

Source: Voice of America

Details: A formal letter obtained by Voice of America and dated 10 February 2023, shows a sale request for 4,080 military-grade microchips for the Russian military.


Quote: "The sale request was addressed from a deputy commander of the 546th military representation of the Russian Ministry of Defense and the commercial director of Russian manufacturer NPO Poisk to Milandr CEO S.V. Tarasenko for delivery by April 2023, more than a year into the war."

More details: Reportedly, the letter instructs Milandr to provide three types of microchip components to NPO Poisk, a well-established Russian defence manufacturer that produces detonators for weapons used by the Russian Armed Forces.

In addition to Milandr CEO, the letter was sent to I.A. Shvid, the commander of the Russian Defense Ministry’s 514th military representation of the Russian Ministry of Defence.

In November 2022, the US imposed sanctions against the Milandr company for illegal procurement of microelectronic components using front companies.

Milandr is listed in more than 500 contracts in Russia’s database of public contracts, supplying numerous state-owned and military-grade enterprises, including Ural Optical Mechanical Plant, Concern Avtomatika and Izhevsk Electromechanical Plant, or IEMZ Kupol, which also have been sanctioned by the United States.

Alexey Novoselov, Milandr’s current director, stated earlier that he was unaware of any connections to the Russian military.

"I don’t know any military persons who would be interested in our product," he told Bloomberg in a phone interview last August, noting that the company mostly produces electric power meters.

He stated that the accusations by the US are "like a fantasy". "The United States’ State Department, they suppose that every electronics business in Russia is focused on the military. I think that is funny," he added.

Yet a representative of the US Department of Defense told Voice of America that helping the Russian troops kill tens of thousands of people during an illegal invasion "is no laughing matter".

"The company is fueling microchips for missiles and heavily armoured vehicles that are used to continue the war in Ukraine," said the defence official, who spoke to Voice of America on the condition of anonymity.

"There are consequences to their actions, and the U.S. will persist to expose and disrupt the Kremlin’s supply chain," the US defence official added.

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