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Russia won't buy uncompleted cruiser from Ukraine

Russia won't buy uncompleted cruiser from Ukraine 21.01.2011
Text: Lenta.Ru
Photo: cruiser Ukraina. navsource.narod.ru
Russia will not purchase uncompleted Project 1164 cruiser Ukraina (former Admiral Lobov) from Ukraine, reports Argumenty Nedeli referring to a source in Russian defense ministry. Nonetheless, Russia agrees to take the ship only for free.

Completion and upgrade works on the missile cruiser is evaluated as RUR 50 mln. To compare, this sum is enough to buy four Project 636 Varshavyanka diesel electric submarines or several Project 20380 corvettes. Closed-door talks on procurement of Ukraina have been held for years, but the parties could not agree on price. According to URA-Inform.Donbass, Russia has already informed Ukraine that it would take the cruiser only on a grant basis.

Construction of cruiser Ukraina was kicked off in 1984. Russian and Ukrainian defense ministers in 2005 decided to stop completion of the ship because none of fleets needed such cruisers. As for various appraisals, Ukraina is 50-95 per cent completed. Maintenance of the uncompleted cruiser costs Ukraine $1 mln per year.

In July 2010 members of Ukrainian parliament repealed the decree naming the ship Ukraina. This decision was made with the view that the cruiser would not be commissioned into Ukrainian Navy. Two months earlier Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich said that if Russia needed Ukraina, it could complete the ship at own expense.

At present, there are three Project 1164 missile cruisers in Russian Navy Ц Black Sea Fleet flagship Moskva, Pacific Fleet flagship Varyag, and cruiser Marshal Ustinov in Northern Fleet. Displacement is 11,300 tons; length is 187 meters; beam is 20 meters; max speed is 32 knots; fuel range is 7,500 miles. Cruisers are armed by Bazalt-type cruise missile systems, air defense systems Fort and Osa, gun mounts AK-130, 533-mm torpedo tubes, and deck-based helicopter Ka-27.

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