The National Interest (USA): Russian Pacific fleet is getting stronger. That’s why it’s important

In recent years the Russian Navy, in General, turned into a small regional, but still very dangerous a deadly fighting force. However, in the past few months, Russia is slowly but systematically directs serious efforts at strengthening and, more importantly, modernize their fleets. Over the past few months, Russia has made great strides in the modernization of its Pacific fleet, which by the end of 2020 will receive in its composition 15 new combat ships and support vessels, which by the end of 2020 will operate in the far East.

For Russia, which still faces many of the same issues and challenges associated with military naval fleet, which was pursued by the Soviet Union, the restoration of the Pacific fleet was a priority. Although Russia inherited a huge modern fleet of surface ships and submarines, the Russian Federation was not able to maintain such a fleet. Including the Pacific fleet, which in the early 1990-ies were at the peak of its power. It is composed of several hundred warships, small craft and submarines. He had access in the Pacific and Indian oceans.

After the Soviet collapse and the economic crisis of the 1990-ies of the Pacific fleet turned into a graveyard of warships and in 20 years got in your part of only one new ship — missile boat.

Although the Pacific fleet is unlikely in the near future will be the most powerful force of the ocean, work on its restoration to the level corresponding to its former glory is already underway. One of the differences between the former and the current Pacific fleet is that its surface component will be supplemented with a large number of frigates, corvettes and small missile ships.

Among the 15 new ships that will join the Pacific fleet — multipurpose corvettes project 20385 “Thundering”, a diesel-electric submarine of project 636.3 “Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky”, a minesweeper project 12700 “James Belyaev”, anti-sabotage boat project 03160 “Raptor”, sea tug “Andrei Stepanov” and two rescue boats of project 23040.

In November last year, a series of different tests in the sea of Japan passed by the Russian Corvette “Loud”. This is the seventh ship to be built in the new Russian series of class ships “guarding” designed specifically for the Pacific fleet. The command of the Russian Navy announced plans to lay till 2021, a total of 13 corvettes in this class.

In addition to surface ships, with the aim of supporting the Pacific fleet of powerful vessels will be replenished and its underwater component. State media reports, last month the Chief of the Russian Navy Admiral Nikolai Evmenov has announced that in the near future in the Russian Pacific fleet will be six diesel-electric submarines of project 636.3.

“In the short term the submarine forces of the Pacific fleet will be replenished with a series of six pieces of diesel-electric submarines of project 636.3 built for the enterprise “Admiralty shipyards” in St. Petersburg”, — says the congratulatory telegram of the commander of the Russian Navy on the occasion of 289 anniversary of the Pacific fleet of Russia, reports TASS.

Submarines were modernized and equipped with new life-support systems for operations in the far East. The news Agency TASS also said it plans to further armament of the submarine forces of the Pacific fleet nuclear submarines of the 4th generation, and the development of coastal infrastructure-based submarines.

“Will continue modernization work on a large anti-submarine ships of project 1155 and multi-purpose submarines existing projects, added Evmenov. — The resource of these ships and submarines is of great modernization reserve, and it will be used”.
During the ongoing Russian military reform has already achieved major successes on the Russian black sea and Baltic fleets and the Caspian flotilla. In addition, several submarines and warships was sent to the Northern fleet.

In a telegram sent to the sailors on the occasion of the Day of the Baltic fleet, Evmenov said that combat forces had made “an invaluable contribution to the development of the Russian naval weapons and naval art”. He announced that the surface component of the Baltic fleet will be replenished with a series of six small missile ships of project 22800 (class “Karakurt”), and four of them will carry on Board a Maritime variant of the air defense missile and artillery complex “Carapace-M”.

The frigates of project 22350 and corvettes of the new project 20386, built at the plant “Severnaya Verf” in St. Petersburg, will be the basis of an ocean-going Navy. It is unclear which of these ships will join the Pacific fleet, but it is clear that Russia intends by the end of this decade, again to turn it into a high-performance and full-scale naval force capable of operating in ocean and coastal waters.