Shipyards make their way to the icebreakers
"Star" and the Crimean "Gulf" will fight with Baltzavod for a new order
After the struggle for the super-powered icebreaker Leader, an order for which the Far Eastern Zvezda received, Russian shipyards begin the race for two more nuclear-powered icebreakers with a capacity of 60 MW and a cost of 100 billion rubles. As found out by Kommersant, in addition to the Baltzavod affiliated with the United Shipbuilding Corporation, which is already building three LC-60s, Zvezda and Kerch Zaliv, which is controlled by the Ak Bars group, plan to participate in the competition. The last shipyard was already considered as a contender for the construction of the “Leader”. Experts note that Baltzavod remains the most likely winner of the competition.
Three shipyards can compete for an order to build the fourth and fifth nuclear icebreakers with a capacity of 60 MW, industry sources told Kommersant. According to them, in addition to the Baltzavod (part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation, USC), the Far Eastern Zvezda (managed by the Rosneft and Gazprombank consortium) and the Zaliv Kerch plant, which is managed by the Gorky Zelenodolsk plant, are planning to apply for the competition.
FSUE Atomflot announced a tender for the construction of these icebreakers on July 19. The maximum contract price is 100.1 billion rubles, the deadline is December 2024 and December 2026. The application deadline is August 5, the electronic auction will be held the next day.
The main contender for the construction of these icebreakers has always been considered Baltzavod. The shipyard is already building three LC-60s with a total value of 121.4 billion rubles. since 2012. The deadlines for the delivery of icebreakers were repeatedly postponed, according to the latest data, for the lead ship Arktika - this is the year 2020, for the first and second production icebreakers Sibir and Ural - 2021 and 2022.
The principal decision on the construction of two more LC-60s was made at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on November 28 at Baltzavod (for details, see Kommersant-SPb on December 6, 2018 ). The project will be funded under a mixed scheme - 45 billion rubles. will give the budget, 9 billion rubles - funds from Rosatom, the rest of the money will be attracted by the state corporation in banks (see “Kommersant” of May 23 and December 17, 2018). In "Rosatom" said that the contract for the construction of icebreakers need to sign before the end of 2018, it has not yet been concluded. According to Kommersant sources, the problem is connected with the justification of the costs of building ships. Now the interlocutors of “Kommersant” do not exclude that the contract can be signed only in early 2020.
Last week, the head of the corporation, Alexei Rakhmanov, told Prime, that USC expects to get a contract before November: “We declare as part of our understanding of the value of these icebreakers and move forward.” On “Star”, “Gulf” and in “Ak Bars” they didn’t respond to the request of “Ъ”.
Sources of “Kommersant” in the industry remind that approximately the same composition of participants was in the struggle for the super-power icebreaker “Leader”, which was eventually transferred to the “Star” by the decision of the president. The interlocutors of “Kommersant” note that the “Star” is now claiming “in general for all orders.” They also emphasize that the Kerch "Gulf", which built the nuclear lighter "Sevmorput" in 1988, and now successfully builds patrol small rocket ships and auxiliary ships for the Navy, should not be underestimated. Two years ago, on the Gulf, they confirmed their interest in building the Leader icebreaker and assured that for this purpose there are “all the necessary facilities” - a dry dock 360 meters long and 60 meters wide, a nuclear safety department, etc. But the shipyard had to dredge ( see “Kommersant” on August 31, 2017). At the same time, the interlocutors of “Kommersant” remind that when the decision was made to give the “Leader” to the “Star”, it was understood that the Baltzavod would receive two LC-60s, without which its continued existence would be threatened. At the same time, the load on the Ak Bars shipyards is also falling, and they need to fight for new orders, sources added to Kommersant.
The head of Infoline-Analitics, Mikhail Burmistrov, says that the chosen format of the competition makes the battle for the Baltzavod difficult for the contract. The Gulf does not look like a real competitor, the expert believes, but Zvezda can claim fulfillment of the contract, although it is obvious that this will require cooperation with Baltzavod according to a scheme that is being discussed for the construction of the Leader icebreaker. The construction period now looks extremely ambitious, it will be difficult for them to withstand even the Baltzavod building the first ships of the series, notes Mr. Burmistrov, and for Zvezda these terms objectively look impracticable (especially on the third production icebreaker).
So this is for the 4th and 5th LK-60ya nuclear icebreakers (new Artika class).
The first 3 are in various state of construction at the Baltic Shipyard.
The Zvezda shipyard had already won a contract for the bigger LK-110Ya (Lider class) icebreaker.
In addition the Zvezda shipyard should build some LNG icebreakers.
Zaliv has the size for building such a vessel, but did not build anything similar in size and complexity since 1988.
Probably the contract will stay with the baltic shipyard, and it is possible that the competition has been opened only for transparency reasons and to push the shipyards for a more efficient work.
Even if the Baltic shipyard should lose the contract for the last two artika class, it would not be that critical for them.
They would have the resources to start construction of the Leader class nuclear destroyer/cruisers.
Afterall, the whole lot of Kirov class battlecruiser has been built there.