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Russia to set up new Stellar City on premises of Khrunichev Space Center in Moscow

August 10, 2018, 15:12 updated at: August 10, 2018, 15:12 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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© Vladimir Astapkovich/TASS

MOSCOW, August 10. /TASS/. Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos intends to create a new Stellar City for space research on the territory of the Khrunichev Center in Moscow, Roscosmos Chief Dmitry Rogozin told reporters on Friday.

"It was earlier proposed that the Khrunichev Center should sell its Moscow land to pay off debts. But the [Russian] president did not support this idea. Yesterday I met with Moscow Mayor [Sergei] Sobyanin and we agreed to hold a large joint event in September to consider the issue already decided by the president, the issue of preserving the territory of the Moscow [Space] Rocket Factory," the Roscosmos chief said.

"We want to create a new Stellar City there and transfer engineering work collectives of our production facilities in Moscow to that place," Rogozin said.

The Roscosmos chief also said that many buildings of the Khrunichev Space Center were in a poor condition and it was necessary to modernize them.

The Khrunichev Space Center has been sustaining losses since 2007, according to its financial statements. The company revealed its financial problems in late 2013. Then-Head of the United Rocket and Space Corporation Igor Komarov said in 2014 that more than 30 billion rubles ($448 million at the current exchange rate) were required for the company’s recovery, according to a preliminary estimate.

Government to allocate funds for paying off Khrunichev Center’s debts

The Russian government will help repay debts on loans to the Khrunichev Space Center, Rogozin said.

"We expect that proceeding from the [Russian] president’s principled decision, the government will help us with the repayment of the debts on loans obtained in previous years. As for penalties and fines, the government is also ready to postpone their pay-off as it is hardly necessary to get them back in the next few months or even years," the Roscosmos chief said.

There can be no talk about the bankruptcy of the Khrunichev Space Center, Rogozin said.

What is necessary is to "restore normal production and move further," the Roscosmos chief said.

As Rogozin stressed, the Russian president’s principled position is that "the enterprise should be preserved and land must not be used for debt repayment.".

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