Russia Delivers Last Project 636.1 Diesel-Electric Submarine to Vietnam
Russia’s arms exporter Rosoboronexport has delivered the last Project 636.1 Varshavyanka-class (NATO reporting name: Kilo) diesel-electric submarine to Vietnam and, thus, fulfilled the contract for the delivery of a batch of six submarines, which had been signed in late 2009.
The submarine was transported from the Admiralty Wharves Shipyard in St. Petersburg in northwest Russia to Cam Ranh in central Vietnam with the use of the Netherlands’ heavy load carrier Rolldock Star.
The ship will be unloaded and the submarine will be floated out within the next three days after all administrative procedures are completed and customs documentation is formalized.
Today, the Vietnamese Navy operates the first four Project 636.1 submarines, in particular, the Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hai Phong and Da Nang.
The contract for the construction of a batch of six Project 636.1 submarines was worth about $2 billion.
The submarines delivered to Vietnam have all organic systems and are armed with the Club-S missile system with a range of 300 kilometers (186 miles).
At the same time, Russia is building the second two Gepard-3.9-class missile frigates for the Vietnamese Navy.
Russian specialists are also providing technical support for Vietnamese shipyards building six Project 12418 Molniya-class (Tarantul V) missile boats with the Uran-E (SS-N-25 Switchblade) missile system under the Russian license.
Russia is a traditional partner of Vietnam in the sphere of military and technical cooperation.
In recent years, Vietnam has ordered advanced Russian-made military hardware worth more than $4.5 billion.
In addition to the agreement on the delivery of Varshavyanka-class submarines, another large-scale contract envisages the purchase of a batch of Russian-made Sukhoi Su-30MK2 (Flanker-C) multipurpose fighter jets worth about $1 billion by Vietnam.
According to the Vietnamese government, Vietnam’s annual defense spending totals about $1.5 billion, which is equivalent to 1.8% of its GDP.