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Russia expects to receive Mistral ships on time -- minister

Russia expects to receive the French Mistral-class helicopter carriers within the agreed time, Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said on Thursday.

"Russia plans to receive the Mistral ships within the scheduled time. These plans remain unchanged," Manturov said.

Russia-France mistral contract

Under the contract, Russia is to receive the first of the two Mistral-class helicopter carriers currently in construction in France in October this year.

However, French President Francois Hollande said last week that the deal would be carried through only if the ceasefire accords were observed in Ukraine and progress was made in the Ukrainian political process.

The 1.12 billion euro contract for building two Mistral-type ships was signed by the Russian defense exporting company Rosoboronexport and French DCNS in June 2011.

Under the contract, Russia is to receive the first of the two warships, the Vladivostok, in October this year. The second Mistral-class helicopter carrier, the Sevastopol, is expected to be handed over to Russia next year.

Mistral-type helicopter carrier

The Mistral-type helicopter carriers have a displacement of 21 tons, the maximum body length of 210 meters, the speed of 18 knots and the range of up to 20,000 miles.

The helicopter carrier can accommodate 450 people in addition to its crew of 180. It carries 16 helicopters, of which six can be simultaneously stored on the flight-deck, and can carry several dozen armored vehicles.

France will have to pay Russia a penalty, if it fails to fulfill the contract.

[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 25Sep14]

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