Yantar acting CEO upbeat about building ships for Indian Navy

The launching ceremony of the Tarkash ("Quiver"), the second guided missile frigate of Project 11356, built for India at Yantar Shipyards in 2010. Source: Igor Zarembo / RIA Novosti

The launching ceremony of the Tarkash ("Quiver"), the second guided missile frigate of Project 11356, built for India at Yantar Shipyards in 2010. Source: Igor Zarembo / RIA Novosti

Oleg Shumakov, the acting General Director and chief executive of Baltic Shipyard Yantar, is confident about the prospects of cooperation with the Indian Navy in building more advanced ships. In his interview to RIA Novosti, Shumakov speaks about the possible new contracts for the Indian Navy, the construction of passenger icebreaker ferries for the Far East and the handover deadlines for oceanographic and military ships.

What is the current situation at the factory in the light of new macroeconomic conditions?

Today, the factory is set quite well in terms of order volume and job security of its employees. We have contracts for the construction of six frigates for the Russian Navy and two amphibious ships, and we are completing the project of oceanographic vessel Yantar. In addition, today we are settling the issues related to the plant's participation in the future armament programme, which is defined up to 2025. There, too, are orders that should go to Yantar.

Does the factory have orders today, for repair or construction of civil vessels, besides the ones from the Russian Navy?

In addition to military orders, we are working on options for producing civil vessels. Thus, now we are participating in the tender for the construction of icebreaking ferry for the Far East - the analogue of Sakhalin ferry, a series of which we built in the Soviet era.

The new vessel is also designed to carry both passengers and cargo, including motor transport. The construction of two of such ferries was ordered by the Federal Agency of Sea and River Transport.

As for vessel repair today we have two direct contracts - one for a serious, large-scale repair of patrol ship Neustrashimy (“Fearless”) produced in our factory, another for the repair and modernisation of the towing vessel, its reconfiguration into hydrographic survey vessel. In March, we are awaiting CMDB Almaz to provide its design documentation.

When is the handover deadline for the large landing ship BDK Ivan Gren? And when is the official keel-laying of another amphibious assault ship, Petr Morgunov?

BDK Ivan Gren is now being prepared for mooring trials. The task of the factory is to hand it over this year. The second landing ship of this project is Petr Morgunov, which the factory has already started building: the sections assembly and various preparatory work are underway. The keel-laying time is not clear yet. However, in view of the 70th anniversary of the factory in July of this year, we are considering the possibility to time the keel-laying ceremony to July 8.

How is the construction of the so-called admiral series of patrol ships for the Russian Navy going?

To date, on the lead ship of the series, TFR Admiral Grigorovich, things are going quite well. And there is no doubt that in summer it will be handed over to the Navy and go out to the Black Sea. The following ships will be built faster because building the first ship we worked through all the complexities of the project. The second ship, Admiral Essen, should be handed over to the Navy at the end of the year, while the construction of the third ship, Admiral Makarov, will be completed in 2016.

Any plans of further cooperation with the Indian Navy, which has already received six frigates…

There should be negotiations in India regarding the operation of three ships that we built for the Indians. At the same time the possibility of building on new orders for the Indian Navy by our factory will be discussed. In any case, India has already expressed an interest; it was regarding four ships of more advanced modifications. The factory is ready for such work, we got a great deal of experience working on the previous contract for India, and we consider this cooperation fruitful and mutually beneficial. So, should the factory get the contract, it will fulfill it at proper quality level.

Have the tests of oceanographic vessel Yantar been completed? When will it be handed over to the customer?

We plan to complete the tests of this vessel in February, and then to hand it over to the fleet upon agreement with the customer.

First published in Russian by RIA Novosti.

All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.