This should happen next week, according to a source in the company DCNS.
“The first tests on the open sea are planned for the period between 16th and 20th of March. The exact date of release of the ship leaving the dock will depend on the weather conditions,”- said the source. He explained that the main objective is to test the navigation systems.
According to the source in the agency, there will be no Russian representatives on the ship. He also reminded that the Russian sailors who have gone through six months training on the first helicopter carrier like “Mistral” – “Vladivostok”, left Saint-Nazaire in December of 2014.
In February of this year, experts close to the Russian Defense Ministry pointed out that, if the ships were not delivered, the parties will part without a trial. In that case, the customer will get the money back in the amount specified in the contract without penalty. At the same time, it is still possible that the ships will be transferred to Russia.
The contract for the construction of two amphibious helicopter carries like “Mistral” worth 1.2 billion euros was concluded between “Rosoboronexport” and the French company DCNS in June of 2011. Under the contract, the delivery of the first ship (“Vladivostok”) was scheduled for November 1, 2014, and the second (“Sevastopol”) – for November 1, 2015.
The issue with the delay in the delivery of the helicopter carriers to Russia is now being solved in the framework of contractual obligations, rather than litigation.