The Navy Day is coming in Russia and, amid festivities, Russian Navy is getting ready to receive its presents and those presents are really something--6 major combatants were laid down at Russia's shipyards.
1. Two new amphibious assault ships, Sevastopol and Vladivostok, of project 23900, at Zaliv wharf in Kerch, Crimea. These are 25 000 ton standard displacement (28 000 full) amphibious ships capable of carrying 20 attack and other helicopters and two enforced battalions of naval infantry (marines). They are stuffed with AD complexes and, in general, are a sign of Russia's movement towards much greater Mediterranean presence. Here is Putin (in Russian) at the ceremony of laying down these ships.
These ships are larger (significantly) than Mistral-class, which France refused to sell to Russia (see the very first post in this blog) and the irony of new assault ships being built in Crimea--the main reason France refused to deliver Mistrals--cannot be lost on anyone even remotely acquainted with the issue.
2. Two new, much larger and improved pr. 22350M Frigates, Admiral Yumashev and Admiral Spiridonov, are "frigates" in the name only--these are, evidently, significantly larger displacement ships with larger number of 3C14 UKSK VLS cells and are carriers of 3M22 Zircon and whatever else is available or will be available in the future. Mind you, that Admiral Golovko of the same series is already afloat and is fitting out.
3. Two newest project 885M SSGNs, Voronezh and Vladivostok, carriers of not only all those cute Zircons but of the improved 3M14 Kalibr with a range of 4500 kilometers. This, BTW, also applies to new frigates.
I, of course, omit here a rather dynamic program of construction of SSKs, corvettes and dedicated missile corvettes--you can see the list here. I also do not include here introduction of the new state-of-the-art SSBNs, such as Prince Oleg of the Borey-M class. She is still to do the trials. Here is she three days ago:
I, of course, also do not expect all this cabal of "analysts" from all kinds of outlets, who had the audacity for the last few years to predict "troubles" for Russia's shipbuilding program, to eat their words. But just a side note: modernization of the Russian Navy, which includes much more than combatants, proceeds apace now both in terms of ASW forces and de facto revival of what used to be known as Naval Missile-carrying Aviation (MRA). This pace allows not only for a reliable defense of Russia's shores, which has been achieved already, but an expansion of the A2/AD bubble well into the ocean zone, if need be, and project forces in what I call a "firefighter mode". You may also call it stabilization operations, such as was done in Syria. But then again, I will repeat myself--Russia exports political stability and this product is hot, hot, hot.