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Russia to institute launch cost controls
Posted: Tue, Apr 5, 2005, 7:47 PM ET (2347 GMT)
Dnepr launch (Kosmotras) The Russian space agency Roskosmos has announced plans to keep commercial launch providers in the country from undercutting rivals in launch costs. In a statement released last week, Roskosmos officials said in recent years there had been a tendency "to offer launch service to foreign customers at the costs much lower than world prices", citing in particular the Dnepr launch vehicle, a converted ICBM. Kosmotras, the Russian company that offers the medium-class Dnepr for an estimated $10 million a flight, says that it is planning five Dnepr launches through the first half of 2006. Roskosmos said it was in the best interest of Russian industry to offer launches that correspond to "average" world prices, and that Russian companies should consult with Roskosmos before signing contracts with customers.
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