Russia Offers Importers to Buy Igor-Belousov-Class Rescuer Along with Subs

Rubric: Russia, Industry

United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) considers the export market of non-nuclear submarine as promising and offers foreign buyers of diesel subs a package approach: along with the subs, Russian shipbuilders are ready to build a Project 21301 salvage ship, says the company’s Annual Report 2017.

However, the document says nothing about the kind of the deep sea rescue system to be mounted on the exported salvage ship. Along with that, the report allows for a customization of the rescue ship for a certain navy’s requirements.

Outside appearance of Project 21301 rescue ship

There had been no such offers to sell a submarine salvage ship together with the subs on the global market before, Andrey Frolov, head editor at the Arms Export magazine told Mil.Press Today. According to him, such vessels are quite specific, and not every country can afford procurement of rescue ships, especially ‘green’ submarine fleet operators.
"Example, Vietnam bought six Russian subs (latest two Project 636.1 Kilo-class submarines joined Vietnamese Navy in February 2017 - editor’s remark), so it is logical to buy a rescuer, too, but their budget may not bear it. Rather, the longstanding submarine-operating countries already have the crew rescue aids", Frolov said.
Despite uniqueness of the offer, the expert stumbled at the possibility for importers to buy the subs and the rescuer as a package. He added that Russia was not the global leader in submarine salvage. "We have strong competitors in this area", he concluded.

Another potential buyer is India. The lead and still alone Project 21300 rescuer, Igor Belousov, visited India in August 2016. The media then reported about the Indian Navy’s interest in the ship.

In November 2016, the USC officials told Mil.Press Today about the prospects for export of the deep-sea rescue submersible 18270 Bester. The spokesmen noted that the system could be supplied either separately or within the Project 21300 ship. By the way, the submersible needs no adaptation for coaming platforms of foreign submarines, because sizes of its suction chamber meet international requirements and NATO standards, allowing for full range of operations for crew salvage of both Russian and foreign-made subs.