MOSCOW, March 3 (RIA Novosti)
Russia estimates a contract with France on the construction of four Mistral class helicopter carriers for the Russian Navy to be worth at least 1.5 billion euros, First Deputy Defense Minister Vladimir Popovkin said. Russia and France signed an intergovernmental agreement in January to jointly build two Mistral-class helicopter carriers at the STX shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France. Another two are to be constructed later at the Admiralty Shipyards in St. Petersburg. "The contract stipulates the purchase of two ships built by France's DCSN and the licenses for construction of two additional ships in Russia for at least 1.5 bln euros," Popovkin said in an interview with the Military-Industrial Courier publication. The official reiterated that Russia would buy the ships with all the original navigational and other technical equipment, including the SENIT 9 naval tactical data system.