Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Update to Russian Sub Disposal

Willy asked last week if $6Mil per to decom. a Russian boat sounded low to anyone else. Turns out it might not have been a typo.

ITAR-TASS, the Russian news agency, confirms this figure in a recent article. Kind of. To start, the article states, "[Sergei Antipov, the deputy director of Russia’s Federal Atomic Energy Agency] said the utilization of the submarines decommissioned to date requires 4 billion U.S. dollars." This would cover, "an approximately equal number of submarines expect utilization in the Far East and in the west of Russia – 40 in each case." So, from this, we can conclude they think it will cost $50 Mil per boat. That sounds a little more realistic. Yet, the article continues, "so far the actual allocation [for the fleet in the east] has totaled 6 million U.S. dollars, which was enough to utilize just one submarine." So it sounds as if the Russians are talking about two different things, and either the press is getting confused (possible), or the Russians are talking out of both sides of their mouth (also possible).

This same issue was brought up in an AP report (h/t to The Sub Report), but this article claims that , "Group of Eight ... promised at least $20 billion over 10 years for the effort," but that is for all kinds of cleanup. Sub decom "could cost $4 billion." So, the number is repeated, this time at an international weapons conference in Tokyo. So, while it sounds low, this seems to be the amount people are buying into right now - $50 mil a boat.

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