Russia, Kazakhstan sign deal on creating Soyuz-5 rocket launch complex

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NUR-SULTAN, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Russia and Kazakhstan on Thursday concluded a contract on creating the Baiterek launch compound for Soyuz-5 carrier rockets at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in southwestern Kazakhstan, Russia's Roscosmos State Space Corporation announced.

The agreement was signed between Rocket and Space Corporation Energia, a subsidiary of Roscosmos, and the Russian-Kazakh joint venture Baiterek. "The ink of the document signals that the Baiterek project has entered the implementation phase," Anatoly Krasnikov, Roscosmos's representative in Kazakhstan, said at an online briefing.

Krasnikov noted that the creation of the Baiterek rocket complex is based on the Zenit-M launch facility at Baikonur. The first launch of Soyuz-5 is scheduled for 2023.

According to media reports, Russia is responsible for creating the Soyuz-5 medium-class carrier rockets, modernizing technical complexes and upgrading spacecraft. The Kazakh side will reconstruct and modernize the ground infrastructure of Zenit-M.

In December 2019, the Kazakh Ministry of Digital Development, Innovation and Aerospace Industry said the Baiterek project will help Baikonur maintain its leading position, and promote strategic partnership between Kazakhstan and Russia in space area.

The Baikonur Cosmodrome, located in southwestern Kazakhstan's Kyzylorda region, is jointly managed by Roscosmos and Russia's Aerospace Forces. Russia leased the spaceport until 2050. Enditem

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