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Russia’s Vostochny spaceport developer pays off debts to avoid power cutoffs

March 25, 2015, 12:28 UTC+3 BLAGOVESHCHENSK

Russia's Dalspetsstroy has repaid over $391,300 in debts

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© Vladimir Smirnov/TASS

BLAGOVESHCHENSK, March 25. /TASS/. Dalspetsstroy, a federal special construction company building the Vostochny spaceport in the country’s Far East, has repaid electricity debt arrears to the local Amurenergosbyt power utility, which is part of the Far East Energy Company (FEEC), the company’s press office said on Wednesday.

The debt repayment has allowed Dalspetsstroy to avoid power cutoffs at the spaceport’s facilities.

"Dalspetsstroy has repaid 23 million rubles [over $391,300] in debts. The issue has been settled and there will be no power cutoffs at the spaceport," Far Eastern Energy Company spokesperson Olesya Glot said.

The Far Eastern Energy Company earlier warned it would start power cutoffs at the spaceport’s facilities from March 12 but postponed these measures after receiving guarantee letters from Dalspetsstroy.

Meanwhile, construction work at the Vostochny spaceport in the Amur Region is lagging behind schedule, delaying the installation of equipment, former head of the Federal Center for Space Ground-Based Infrastructure Operation (TsENKI) Alexander Fadeyev said on Monday.

Russia’s Audit Chamber has exposed the instance of overstating the construction’s estimated cost by $180 million while several corruption scandals have already erupted at the spaceport’s construction site.

Economic Development Minister Alexey Ulyukayev has criticized the implementation of the target program for the development of Russian spaceports regarding the construction of the Vostochny cosmodrome. According to him, cash disbursements within this federal target program have amounted to less than one-third of the planned expenditure and just $130 million worth of funds from $410 million envisaged by the program have been used.

The Vostochny (Eastern) spaceport is being built near the town of Uglegorsk in the Amur Region. The spaceport, which has been under construction since 2010, is scheduled to be built by November 30, 2015.

The Vostochny cosmodrome will comprise two launch platforms, an airfield, facilities for crew members’ pre-launch preparation, oxygen-nitrogen and hydrogen plants, 115 kilometers of roadway and 125 kilometers of rail track.

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