The construction of Russia’s first frigate for its Black Sea Fleet has begun at Yantar Shipyard in the Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad.

The ship is the first of three frigates to be built under Project 11356, signed in October, and will be named Admiral Grigorovich.

The frigate has a displacement capacity of 4,000t, and will be equipped with a 100mm gun, a Shtil surface-to-air missile system and two Kashtan air defence gun / missile systems.

The ship is also equipped with two twin 533mm torpedo launchers, and an anti-submarine warfare helicopter, according to RIA Novosti.

The Russian Navy chief Admiral Vladimir Vysotsky said one or two Project 11356 frigates will join the Black Sea Fleet every year starting from 2013.

Russia is also building another three Project 11356 frigates for the Indian Navy, under a $1.6bn contract signed in 2007.