Putin announces construction of two helicopter carriers in annexed Crimea
On Monday, July 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in the annexed Crimea, where at Zaliv shipyard in Kerch announced the start of construction of helicopter carriers, TASS reports.
"Today, six new long-distance ships are being laid down at the three leading shipyards of Russia. Two universal amphibious ships will be built here, in Kerch. Two frigates are at Severnaya Verf shipyard in St. Petersburg, and two nuclear submarines are in Severodvinsk at Sevmash Shipyard," Putin said.
The ships will receive the names Ivan Rogov and Mitrofan Moskalenko, Admiral Yumashev and Admiral Spiridonov.
According to media reports, the cost of one helicopter carriers is estimated at 100 billion rubles ($1.4 billion USD). It is expected that the displacement of the helicopter carrier will be 25 thousand tons. One ship will be able to carry more than 20 heavy helicopters and up to 900 marines.
In 2011, Russia signed a contract with France for the construction of two Mistral-class ships, which were to be called Vladivostok and Sevastopol, worth 1.2 billion euros.
France was to hand over to Russia the first helicopter carrier back in November 2014, the deadline for delivery of the second expired on November 1, 2015.
Due to the crisis in Ukraine, Paris refused to hand them over to Russia and on October 10, 2015, the Mistrals were sold to Egypt.