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Russian Arms Designer Warns of Problems With Defense Orders

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The current standoff between arms makers and the Defense Ministry over the pricing and quality of weaponry for the Russian military may continue to disrupt state defense orders in 2012, missile designer Yury Solomonov said on Thursday.

The current standoff between arms makers and the Defense Ministry over the pricing and quality of weaponry for the Russian military may continue to disrupt state defense orders in 2012, missile designer Yury Solomonov said on Thursday.

 

“The efforts of the defense industry have not yet been synchronized with the efforts of the Defense Ministry and the government,” Solomonov said at a meeting with Russian lawmakers.

 

“It is a very urgent and sensitive issue that must be resolved in 2012,” the man behind the Topol-M, Yars, and Bulava ballistic missiles said.

 

Solomonov, chief designer at the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology (MITT), sparked heated battles between Russian arms manufacturers and military officials last year by reporting that the 2011 state defense order was in jeopardy partly because the Defense Ministry had delayed the signing of new defense contracts, especially on procurement of strategic nuclear armaments.

 

His report alarmed Russian President Dmitry Medvedev who ordered Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov to ensure the fulfillment of the 2011 state defense order.

 

Since Medvedev's orders, a number of military and defense industry officials have been fired or reprimanded for their poor performance in the implementation of the program.

 

“The current situation is not as bad as in 2011, but this issue must be a priority today, not tomorrow,” Solomonov said on Thursday.

 

The missile designer also said Russia was 10-15 years ahead of its rivals in the development of strategic nuclear weapons, but lagged behind the West at least 30 years in the development of other armaments.

 

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