March 17, 2015 defenseworld.net
The French Mistral helicopter carrier Vladivostok could be relocated from Saint-Nazaire to Brest Naval base due to high maintenance costs, Local media reported.
DCNS and STX shipyard operators are subject to port and maintenance fees of about $2.7 million. It is rumored that the companies might think of relocating the aircraft carrier to join the naval base in Brest, Le Telegramme reported Monday.
Controversy erupted with non delivery of the Mistral ships to Russia after US and allied European countries imposed sanctions against Moscow in regard to Ukraine conflicts. France was to deliver the ship in November last year.
General Director of Russian state-run arms exporter Rosoboronexport Anatoly Isaykin had announced in January that Moscow will make a final decision on the non-delivery of Mistral ships by May.
If the Mistral ships are not delivered, Paris is obliged to return money Moscow paid, Isaykin had said.
Non delivery of the Mistral amphibious assault ship to Russia and delays in the Scorpene and Barracuda submarine projects to different customers has weighed down on the financials of DCNS.
In addition, a delay in the civil nuclear program of France has affected revenues of DNCS. The loss of DNCS is also expected to affect the financials of Thales which owns 35 percent of DCNS.
However, its performance may improve in 2015 due to a recent contract with Egypt to supply warships and another with Saudi Arabia for patrol vessels.