PARIS, June 16 Russia is close to signing a deal
to buy four Mistral class helicopter carriers made by a
French-led consortium, a spokesman for the French defence
ministry said on Thursday.
"I confirm that the signature is imminent but I don't know
when or where," Philippe Ponties said.
The new Mistral carriers are likely to cost between 400
million and 500 million euros ($707 million) each.
Under details of the deal given in the past, they were to be
built by French shipyard companies DCNS and STX along with
Russia's state-run United Shipbuilding Corporation, or OSK. DCNS
is a quarter-owned by defence electronics group Thales
(Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer; Editing by Brian Love)