Russia needs more warships ‘now’ – Navy chief

Russia needs a rapid expansion of its Navy that would incorporate all of the best modernization ideas, the nation’s Navy chief has said

Russia needs more warships ‘now’ – Navy chief

Russia needs more warships ‘now’ – Navy chief

The military operation in Ukraine has shown that shipbuilding should be “sped up,” Admiral Nikolay Yevmenov has said

Russia needs to strengthen its naval forces “now,” the nation’s Navy chief, Admiral Nikolay Yevmenov, has said. The military campaign in Ukraine has demonstrated that all of the best innovative ideas should be implemented immediately, he added.

“The special military operation has shown that we need to speed up,” the Navy head told the Zvezda TV channel on Wednesday, speaking on the sidelines of the International Maritime Defense Show in the Russian city of Kronstadt. “All the best [ideas] should be adopted not just soon but immediately,” he said, calling for a shortening of the “lengthy” design and development as well as research and engineering phases.

Russia’s Black Sea fleet is taking part in the campaign in Ukraine. According to the fleet commander, Vice Admiral Viktor Sokolov, the fleet’s vessels have launched a total of 180 missile strikes at key Ukrainian military facilities.

Yevmenov also said that Russia’s defense industries plan to enhance their shipbuilding capabilities to be able to produce three mine-sweeper-class vessels per year instead of one. This year alone, the Russian Navy expects to receive 44 new ships, including both warships and support vessels.

Earlier on Wednesday, President Vladimir Putin said that a further strengthening of the Russian Armed Forces remains one of the country’s top priorities. Under the enhancement and modernization plans, the Navy is expected to receive more hypersonic Zircon anti-ship missiles, as well as new nuclear-capable submarines of the Borei and Borei-A classes, which are equipped with 16 intercontinental ballistic missiles each.

The Russian Navy currently has a total of six submarines of the Borei and Borei-A class. The first Borei-A class vessel entered military service in 2020, while one more is currently undergoing sea trials. Their number is expected to increase to 12 in the future.

The admiral’s statements came amid the continued Ukrainian counteroffensive that started earlier this month. The operation had been touted by Ukrainian and Western officials for months but has not brought about any meaningful change to the front lines over the past weeks. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, Ukrainian forces have suffered heavy casualties while attacking Russian positions.