18 december 2009

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attends the launching ceremony for the Kirill Lavrov ice-class tanker


Introductory speech by Vladimir Putin:

Good afternoon,

I am very happy to be here today, at one of Russia's oldest shipyards.

The Admitralty Shipyards were founded back in 1704. Shifting the capital to St Petersburg was primarily aimed at creating the first shipbuilding centre in Russia.

Over the next few centuries, the Admiralty Shipyards have produced nearly 3,000 surface ships and submarines. A total of 300 submarines have been made, including nuclear-powered ones.

The enterprise has always been innovative, applying the latest high technology. Fifty years ago, the world's first nuclear-powered icebreaker was launched here.

Today, we are witnessing the launching of another large vessel. Exactly one year ago, I saw the shining eyes of the shipbuilders, which were full of determination to start work on the new project. The project was a professional challenge, as a huge ship was to be built within a short period, and the job entailed using the latest cutting-edge technology.

Today, we are here for the launching ceremony of a ship named after the brilliant Russian actor Kirill Lavrov.

Kirill Lavrov is not only a prominent figure in Russian culture, but also a true patriot and a man of honour. I knew him personally for many years.

As sailors say, the ship will sail the way it is named. I am sure that this vessel named after Kirill Lavrov will prove its right to bear this name with its achievements in the Arctic.

I would like to congratulate you all on the completion of the work.