STRELNA /ST/ PETERSBURG/. June 21. /TASS/. Russia will build a new series of six patrol vessels for the Black Sea Fleet and two patrol ships for the Arctic by 2020, Russian Navy commander Viktor Chirkov told journalists on Sunday.
The said the first of these ships would be handed over to the Black Sea Fleet within the next three years. The ships are being built at the Zelenodolsk and Vyborg shipyards. "Along with this new series of six ships for the Black Sea Fleet, two more patrol ships of the ice-breaker type will be built for the use in the Arctic zone," he said, adding that these two ships would be built in 2019 and 2020. These ships, according to Chirkov, will combine the characteristics of a patrol ship, an ice-breaker and a tugboat. Apart from that, all the new patrol boats will be used to escort civil ships to protect them against pirate attacks, to ensure the Navy’s combat stability in the coastal zone and to be part of naval groups in off-shore maritime zones.
"The ships will be able of long-term staying at any area of the World Ocean with possible rotation of the crew and shipyard checks at any port, including some foreign ports," he said.
"Now it is up to industrial enterprises to meet our technical requirements. Luckily, now we have a possibility to choose options from among the ones offered by manufacturers," he added.
Russia’s Navy will carry out a profound modernization of about ten nuclear-powered submarines of projects 971 and 949.
"Everything will be new there. All the units, mechanisms, radio electronics," Viktor Chirkov said, adding the after the modernization Russia’s Navy would have practically new nuclear submarines in terms of onboard equipment and weapons.
The submarines are being overhauled at the shipyards Zvyozdochka in Severodvinsk and Zvezda in the Far East’s Primorsky Territory.
"Surface ships and submarines will be built under a technology to make it easier to equip them with new weapons when necessary. Ships of these projects have enormous potential for modernization and we will make use of that," Chirkov said.
"Along with that, nuclear submarines of the fifth generation are being designed. I can say they will have wider capabilities," he said.