Russia turns Kilo sub over to China
The Admiralteiskiye Verfi shipyard in St. Petersburg turned over the first of two improved Kilo-class attack submarines to China's navy last week, according to the Interfax news agency.
Shipyard Director Vladimir Aleksandrov said Oct. 21 that shipyard officials, the state-run exporters Rosoboronexport and the Chinese navy had signed a document confirming the transfer of the submarine.
The date for second submarine's delivery was not disclosed.
The two submarines were unveiled at the shipyard last summer and are part of a Russia-China deal worth $1.5 billion that was signed in May 2002. The contract called for five submarines. Two are being built by Admiralteiskiye Verfi while two others are being built by Sevmash in Severodvinsk. The final one is being built by Krasnoye Sormovo in Nizhni Novgorod.
The Kilos are considered one of the most advanced diesel electric submarines in the world and will boost China's ability to conduct a naval blockade of Taiwan.
Taiwan's government is debating a special defense budget of some $18 billion that would include purchases of up to eight U.S. diesel-electric submarines.
Taiwan's Defense Ministry said in a statement last week that war could break out across the Taiwan Strait between 2010 and 2020 if Taiwan does not engage in an arms buildup.
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May God Bless China!
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