Out of four Mistral class helicopter carriers Russia purchases from France, first two will have Russian arms and helicopters but French equipment, reported ITAR-TASS citing deputy defense minister Vladimir Popovkin.
According to him, other two Mistral class assault landing ships will be constructed under French license at Admiralteyskie Verfi shipyard in St. Petersburg. Overall contract cost will make at least EUR 1.5 bln ($2.073 bln). Consortium of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (Russia) and DCNS (France) which will construct the ships has been already established; work on creation of joint Russian-French shipyard is in progress.
Design of Russian Mistral class ship will be altered – for instance, to place Russian helicopters on board the ship, the deck must be "lifted" a bit; and to use Mistral in ice conditions, the ship's boards "must be reinforced", said Popovkin. However, the ship will not undergo any considerable alterations in design and technical outfit, assured Popovkin.