Source Pravda.Ru

There is hope that funds will be provided for building additional spaceships for ISS

It is hoped in the Russian aerospace agency Rosaviakosmos that necessary funds from the federal budget will be appropriated in September for building additional spaceships for the International Space Station (ISS).

Unless the money is provided, it will be impossible pay for the manufacture of three additional cargo spaceships required for flights to the ISS -one is to be built this year and the other two in 2004-, a highly placed spokesman of the aerospace agency told RIA Novosti Friday.

"It takes over a year to build one such spaceship. So, we asked the government to provide 1.2 billion rubles for us from the funds that were set aside for Rosaviakosmos for the latter half of this year. The Government agreed to make such "re-distribution" of funds, but, so far, it has not appropriated additional money," it was pointed out in Rosaviakosmos.

According to its spokesman, additional funds are required "for continuing the manufacture of the three spaceships in excess of the plan to keep the space station in a working condition." Such a need emerged after the flights of U.S. shuttles to the ISS were suspended.