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Sri Lankan president looks to purchase US$135 million Russian vessel

Sri Lanka’s president has put forward to a proposal to purchase a US$135 million vessel from a Russian state-owned company for the Sri Lankan navy.

Maithripala Sirisena is reportedly keen to buy the Russian-built Gepard 5.1 Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), telling cabinet ministers that the Sri Lanka Navy has “the requirement of this kind (sic) of a ship and already given the recommendation to purchase this.”

The cost of US$ 135 million is “exclusive of 15 percent of Sri Lanka Government’s contribution to the state credit together with which the total ship value including on-board spares and ammunition is US$ 158.5 million,” he added.

The Sri Lankan President also added that the “superior marine steel used by Russia” meant the “workmanship, weaponry and sensors are similar to a Frigate class,” according to the Sunday Times.

Sri Lanka recently received a ship from the Indian government, “in a bid to expand its operational capabilities,” according to an official military website.