Report: Russia postpones Mistral warship project to 2016

A government source claimed that the Defense Ministry had decided to abandon plans to build the final two Mistral warships

From RIA Novosti:  Russia is putting back the launch of a project to build two Mistral-class amphibious assault ships under French license from 2013 to 2016, a Defense Ministry source said on Friday.

“The Russian Defense Ministry is not abandoning plans to build two Mistral-class ships in Russia but is postponing the start of the construction work from 2013 to 2016,” the source said. . . .

Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation said earlier in the day the contract to build two Mistral ships is in force, dismissing media reports that the country’s Defense Ministry had dropped the construction plans.

“We have not been informed of any such decision by the Russian Defense Ministry. Currently, the contract remains in force, as before,” a spokesman for Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation said.

The spokesman also confirmed that the construction of the first two Mistral ships in France will be continued.

Russian business daily Vedomosti on Friday cited a government source saying that the Defense Ministry has decided to abandon plans to build two Mistral class amphibious assault ships under French license in Russia.

Russia and France signed a $1.2-billion contract for two French-built Mistral class ships, including the transfer of sensitive technology, in June 2011.  (photo: RIA Danichev Aleksey/RIA Novosti)

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