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Duma MPs want to increase budget funding of Vostochny spaceport

October 29, 2013, 9:55 UTC+3

Current state financing specified in the draft budget today makes it impossible to fulfill Putin's presidential decree

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Photo ITAR-TASS/ Sergei Kazak

Photo ITAR-TASS/ Sergei Kazak

MOSCOW, October 29 (Itar-Tass) - First deputy head of the Industry Committee of the State Duma lower house of  the Russian parliament Vladimir Gutenev has sent to Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin a parliamentary inquiry, which draws attention to the cuts in the spending in the draft federal budget for 2014-2016 on the development of the space industry against the background of the already insufficient financing.

According to Gutenev, the state financing specified in the draft budget today makes it impossible to fulfill Putin's presidential decree “On the Vostochny Cosmodrome,” according to which, the first launch from the spaceport is to be carried out in 2015. According to the data specified in the letter addressed to the Russia'sdeputy prime minister, the Federal Target Program “Development of Russian Cosmodromes for 2006-2015” is already 12.5 billion rubles underfunded. And, according to the proposed draft, the allocated funds are to be reduced by almost 5 percent. In the view of the lawmaker, this can cause a several years’ delay in the commissioning of the first phase of the Vostochny cosmodrome.

Gutenev also draws attention to a recently identified additional need for increased financing of the spaceport construction works. In connection with the recalculation of the estimated cost of facilities, the price of the cosmodrome has increased by 11.1 billion rubles. “This dissonance between the additional need for funding, the existing shortage of funds and curtailment of financing within the considered Russian budget for 2014-2016 cannot but cause concern among NGO representatives, leaders of the defence industry and rocket and space industry enterprises and other stakeholders, whose activity is directly related to the development of the space industry in Russia,” says the MP inquiry.

“Sharing the concern of colleagues, n October 18, at a meeting of the State Duma Committee on Budget and Taxes, I put several questions to the Finance Ministry officials on budgeting the Russian space industry programs. A full answer was given to none of the questions,” Gutenev writes to the Russian government’s deputy chairman.

In this connection, the MP asks Dmitry Rogozin, as the space industry supervisor and initiator of its reorganisation, to conduct an assessment of the current budgetary allocations for the construction of the Vostochny cosmodrome and, if the shortage of funds is revealed, provide assistance in correcting the corresponding figures in the budget bill.

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