Second Russian-made frigate arrives in Vietnam

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Ordered by the Vietnamese navy, the second Russia-made Gepard class frigate has arrived at the Cam Ranh port.

The frigate, made by Russian factory Zelenodolsk Gorky, was brought to the port in Khanh Hoa Province on July 25 on a cargo ship, news website VietNamNet reported Sunday.

Russia and Vietnam signed a US$350 million contract on the construction of two Gepard 3.9 class frigates for the Vietnamese Navy in 2006. The first frigate was floated out in December 2009 and was delivered to Vietnam in March 2011.

Renat Mistakhov, director of the factory, said that Gepard 3.9 boats proved their fighting prowess during a trial held in the Baltic sea. 

The first boat has been named "Dinh Tien Hoang" by the Vietnamese navy. Dinh Tien Hoang (924979) is the king credited with laying the foundations for an administrative government in Vietnam.

According to Russian media, Project 1166.1 Gepard 3.9 class frigate is designed to engage surface ships, submarines and air targets, both independently and as part of a task force, as well as to perform escort and patrol tasks.

The ship has a displacement of 2,000 tons, a length of 102 meters, a maximum speed of 23 knots, a crew of 103 personnel and a cruising range of 5,000 miles.

The frigate is armed with an Uran-E anti-ship missile system, a 76.2-mm gun mount AK-176M, a Palma air defense artillery system, two 30-mm gun mounts AK-630M and 533-mm torpedo tubes. It can carry a Ka-28 or a Ka-31 Helix naval helicopter.

Together with the country's recently ordered six Kilo class submarines and Su-30MK2 naval fighter-bombers, the Gepard deal is seen as part of Vietnam's current navy modernization drive.

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