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BOLSHOY KAMEN, /Primorye Territory/. September 4. / Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu is reported to assess satisfactory progress at Vladivostok's Zvezda shipyard in meeting state orders to repair and upgrade six nuclear submarines, extending their service life for another two decades.
The upgrade brings the subs closer to the fourth-generation level, fitting them with several types of state-of-the-art missiles and other hardware, representatives of Russian Naval Command and the Far East shipyard's administration told the minister.
The condition of all six vessel hulls could give them a minimum life of 30 years, Shoigu was told.
The minister on Friday gave instructions to study the issue of fully delegating responsibility to shipyards during major repairs and upgrade of nuclear submarines, including their security.
"This task has to be accomplished as soon as possible," Shoigu said during a working visit to the Zvezda shipyard in the Primorye Territory in the Russian Far East on Friday.
The crews of the submarines docked for repairs or upgrade must continue their service aboard other submarines during this period, constantly maintaining and improving their professional skills, he said.
"It is unacceptable that during three or five years while submarines are under repair, their crews are staying on the shore. Sailors must regularly go to sea, undergo training and retraining at training centers rather than sitting idly at the shipyard", the defense minister said.
Submarines’ crews must improve their professional skills constantly, he said.
The shipyard’s administration told the defense minister that during the repairs submarines would be maintained by a shipyard’s group specially trained at a Russian naval training facility.