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British "Phoenix" Won't Get Onboard Russian Frigate

British "Phoenix" Won't Get Onboard Russian Frigate 12.09.2012
Text: RusNavy.com
Photo: Project 11356 frigate Admiral Grigorovich at shipyard. sdelanounas.ru
Contracts on shipboard furniture for the first three Project 11356 (11356R) frigates were partially handed over to national manufacturers. Therefore, Marine Complex Systems Ltd (MCS) determined by Russian defense ministry as a supplier of metal furniture for Project 11356 frigates now must yield its positions to Russian companies, an insider in shipbuilding industry told Central Navy Portal.

Due to impossibility to meet the estimated cost, Marine Complex Systems Ltd (St. Petersburg) will no longer deliver metal furniture for Project 11356 lead frigate Admiral Grigorovich being built since Dec 2010 at JSC Yantar Shipyard. According to plans, the frigate is to be launched this fall and delivered to the Navy in 2014.

Refusal to use MSC services was caused by high cost of works; according to Central Navy Portal, the company wanted RUR 30 mln for furnishing of the frigate. It is twice as much as Russian manufacturers offer. Being authorized dealer of British company Strongbox Marine Furniture Ltd, MCS is to deliver their metal furniture to Russian Navy.

Yantar shipyard declined to plant MCS furniture on the lead frigate Admiral Grigorovich because it could frustrate the ship's delivery deadlines; moreover, furniture delivery for that frigate had been already contracted long ago. But the second frigate Admiral Essen will be furnished by MCS though. The company is to furnish 17 premises in that ship, and somewhat 34 premises in the third hull, Admiral Makarov. Despite the fact that MCS is not a sole furniture supplier of the project, it keeps ambitions taking noticeable efforts to win full-fledged contracts.

The shipyard has no right to waive services of MCS at all, because in accordance with the resolution of Russian defense minister Anatoly Serdiukov issued on Nov 9, 2011 Russian defense ministry requires furnishing of new warships with MCS products. Russian military sees no problem in the fact that the British partner of MCS, Strongbox had undergone bankruptcy proceedings early this year.

Director of Marine Complex Systems Ltd recently said in his interview to Pravda Severa newspaper that "the British company by no means went bust, that's tripe! The company does have contracts with British, Dutch, and Canadian navies and sponsors the Prince of Wales polar expedition! You think the Royal British Navy would take such risk?"

According to a journalistic investigation held by Central Navy Portal, in Feb 2012 Strongbox Marine Furniture Ltd (SMF) was placed under administration because of financial inability; in fact, that meant bankruptcy. The assets of the bankrupted company were purchased by a firm with similar name, Strongbox Accommodation Furniture Ltd for GBP 250,000. Control over the new 'phoenix company' was passed to an officer of MCS Eduard Ivanov and former top-managers of Strongbox Marine Furniture.

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