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France is scheduled to deliver the first Mistral-class amphibious assault ship Vladivostok to the Russian Navy on 1 November 2014, a high-ranking defence industry official said.

RIA Novosti cited the official as saying that the ship will be equipped and followed by sea trials prior to delivery.

Being built at the DCNS shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, the Vladivostok ship is due to be floated out on 15 October.

The ship delivery is worth part of a $1.52bn deal signed by Russia in June 2011 for the procurement of two Mistral-class aircraft carriers from France.

Under the deal, which also includes transfer of technology, DCNS will serve as the prime contractor while STX shipyard, Saint-Nazaire in western France and Russian shipbuilder OSK will be subcontracted for the shipbuilding platforms.

"The ships are armed with two Breda Mauser 30mm naval guns and four 12.7mm machine guns."

As part of an intergovernmental agreement, Russia will also procure two additional Mistral-class ships, which will be built 80% in Russia and 20% in France.

The 199m-long, 22,000t Mistral-class ships feature MRR-3D NG surveillance radar and a high-performance communications suite to support humanitarian operations and a variety of other missions.

Capable of cruising at a speed of 18k, the ships are armed with two Breda Mauser 30mm naval guns and four 12.7mm machine guns.

French-built Mistral-class ships can accommodate a crew of 450 and 16 helicopters, including eight Ka-52K and eight Ka-29/31 Helix assault transport helicopters, as well as four landing vessels and 70 armoured vehicles.

The second ship of the class is scheduled to be delivered to Russia in 2015.

Image: French Navy’s Mistral-class ship, Mistral (L9013) at sea. Photo: file image.

Defence Technology