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PARIS, August 6. /TASS/. France’s financial losses linked with the failure to deliver two Mistral warships to Russia total €1.5-1.6 billion, member of the French National Assembly Thierry Mariani told the France Inter radio station on Thursday.
"I believe, and I can hardly be wrong in this issue, that the financial losses for France will total about €1.5-1.6 billion. And that will be paid by French taxpayers," Mariani said.
French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said earlier on Thursday that France would pay less than €1.2 billion for failure to deliver the warships to Russia. Mariani noted in this connection that "more openness was needed in this issue." He recalled that the official statement made by the Elysee Palace on Wednesday night mentioned no particular figures.
The parliamentarian noted that, in addition to the €1.2 billion - in his opinion, that’s the minimal sum that will be paid to Russia - one should take into consideration the costs associated with the de-Russification of the Mistral warships, that is, the removal of the Russian equipment and work to re-equip the vessels, whose original design was partially modified to adjust to the Russian standards. "The cost of this work that French needs to do to sell the Mistral ships should total from €200 to €300 million," Mariani said.