Procurement: Russian Frigates For India Delayed

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December 3, 2007: Russian shipbuilders have told India that the three Talwar class frigates ordered last year will be delayed, and it's uncertain by how much. The ships are supposed to arrive in four years. India is paying $534 million for each of them. These are export versions of the Russian Krivak III class ships, which the Russian navy cannot afford to buy for itself. The first three Talwars entered service in 2003-4. There were some teething problems with these ships, the first of a new class. But the Indians were finally satisfied, when Russia made good all deficiencies, and India ordered three more. But there was one major shortcoming with the Talwars, the Indian supplied sonars are not working. That's another problem, however.

The Talwar's are 386 feet long, carry 24 anti-aircraft and eight anti-ship missiles, four torpedo tubes, as well as a 100mm gun, close in anti-missile guns, a helicopter, anti-submarine weapons (depth charges and missiles). The ship has a very complete set of electronics gear, except for the missing Indian sonar. There is a crew of 180.

Russia has missed deadlines with earlier warships ordered by India. Recently, Russia demanded an additional $1.2 billion (above the agreed on price) for an aircraft carrier refurbishing job. India believes the carrier project is not practical if it costs an extra $1.2 billion. The Russians say it was an incompetent shipyard manager who is at fault. The shipyard manager has been fired, and the Russians want the additional money before they will proceed.

 


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