Ukrainian Defense Strengthened: Steel Front's Tactical Boats Enhance Naval Capabilities

Synopsis: Steel Front, under the umbrella of Metinvest Holdings owned by Ukrainian billionaire Rinat Akhmetov, has delivered three CB90 fast assault craft to the Ukrainian Armed Forces. These boats, originally designed by Saab's Dockstavarvet for the Swedish Navy, aim to bolster Ukraine's defense capabilities amidst ongoing tensions with Russia. The vessels, equipped with advanced weaponry and operated by a crew of three, signify a strategic investment in Ukraine's maritime defense.
Wednesday, July 10, 2024
Source : ContentFactory

In a significant development aimed at fortifying Ukraine's military readiness, Steel Front, a subsidiary of Metinvest Holdings owned by Ukrainian tycoon Rinat Akhmetov, has delivered three CB90 fast assault craft to the Ukrainian Armed Forces. These tactical boats, crafted by Saab's Dockstavarvet for the Swedish Navy, represent a critical enhancement in Ukraine's naval capabilities amid geopolitical tensions.

The CB90 boasts impressive specifications, measuring 15.9 meters in length and 3.8 meters in beam, powered by twin 625-horsepower diesel engines and water jets enabling speeds of up to 40 knots. With a range of 240 nautical miles, the vessel accommodates a crew of three and can transport over 20 amphibious personnel. Its arsenal includes Browning machine guns, grenade launchers, naval mines, and remote-controlled weapon stations, augmenting Ukraine's defensive prowess in maritime operations.

Steel Front's commitment to Ukraine's defense extends beyond equipment provision. The company disclosed that the procurement of CB90s, coupled with comprehensive training for Ukrainian personnel, incurred costs exceeding $4.1 million. This initiative underscores a broader commitment, with Steel Front having contributed over $200 million since Russia's incursion into Kyiv in February 2022, supporting both military and civilian sectors in Ukraine.

Under the stewardship of Rinat Akhmetov, Steel Front operates within Metinvest Holdings, a multinational conglomerate deeply rooted in Ukraine's mining and metals sector. Akhmetov's advocacy for Ukraine's interests is further exemplified by his pursuit of damages from the Russian government through the European Court of Human Rights, reflecting a proactive stance amidst regional conflict.

Oleksandr Vodoviz, the Office Head and CEO of Metinvest, affirmed the strategic significance of the CB90s in bolstering Ukraine's defense capabilities. He emphasized, "We are delighted that these boats are now in the hands of Ukraine's Defense Intelligence. From crew training to deployment, this process has spanned six months." Vodoviz reiterated Steel Front's unwavering commitment to support Ukraine's sovereignty and security, reinforcing efforts to counter external threats effectively.

The geopolitical context underscores the critical role of the Black Sea as a strategic theater. The deployment of CB90s aims to empower Ukraine in safeguarding its maritime borders and enhancing operational agility in coastal defense scenarios. These vessels are pivotal in augmenting Ukraine's naval fleet, aligning with broader international efforts to bolster the country's defense capabilities amid ongoing regional instability.

Looking ahead, Ukraine anticipates further international support in bolstering its armed forces' capabilities. Recent commitments include Canada's pledge to supply 10 rigid-hull boats alongside military aid encompassing drones and combat support vehicles. Australia's delivery of Sentinel inflatable boats and the Netherlands' promise of Alkmaar-class vessels further underscore international solidarity in reinforcing Ukraine's defense infrastructure.