Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin promised on Sunday to hand out punishment to those who have been involved in illegally privatizing elements of Russia's military-industrial complex.
"I have already sent documents about a range of parts of the military-industrial complex which were the most crudely privatized, arrogantly, as if these people who did this had absolutely had no fear," said Rogozin, who has special responsibility for management of the sector. "They thought that the last 20 years would go on forever. They even thought up simple schemes. But now these documents are with the prosecutors. I will personally take charge of this, so that we have real lists of names," he said in an interview on Russian TV on Sunday.
Rogozin said there would now be red lines over which no-one would be allowed to cross in the aviation, space and defense industries.
"So the director of a plant is not his own boss, this is a defense object. We had a situation before where directors of plants in a range of sectors in our industry - including in space - had wages of 5 million rubles ($161,290) a month, while the the line workers got just 15-25,000 rubles," he said.
Rogozin recalled that in December 2010, President Medvedev had set out a 20 trillion ruble state rearmament program. Of that sum, 3 trillion will be allocated to overhauling the defense industry.
"It's not important how much money is spent on the defense industry, what is important is that it isn't stolen and is wisely spent, so a kopek becomes a ruble. Why is it important to invest in the defense industry - because it is always an engine of our industry," he said
Rogozin painted a picture of an industry suffering long-term decline. "The average wage in the sector is 30,000 rubles per month - that's not a lot. And the average age of the workforce is 46, and this is old hands and new youngsters with no generation in between. And there are only two million workers in the sector, in 1,353 enterprises in the country," he said.