The Russian Ministry of Transport is planning to order four new icebreakers worth RUB79bn (€1.8bn) from United Shipbuilding.

According to reports, three of the icebreakers will cost RUB18bn (€420m) while the fourth will cost RUB25bn (€593m).

Russia’s deputy minister of transport Viktor Olersky said the contract for the construction of the vessels will be signed in November 2011 and construction is scheduled to start in 2012.

The Russian Ministry is also planning to purchase another two icebreakers in the coming years as part of Russian Arctic policies.

Three of the new vessels are to be nuclear powered; the others will have diesel engines.