15:39 GMT10 July 2020
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    Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin told President Vladimir Putin that first rocket launch from the Russian Vostochy space complex should be completed in December 2015.

    NOVO-OGARYOVO (Moscow Region) (Sputnik) The first rocket launch from the Russian Vostochy space complex should be completed in December 2015, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin told President Vladimir Putin on Monday.

    “We propose that the first launch will be in December of this year,” Rogozin told Putin.

    Earlier, media reports said that since construction had fallen behind on the complex that the first launch would occur in 2016.

    Missed deadlines and a corruption scandal following the arrest on embezzlement charges of the former head of one of the project's main contractors have affected the implementation of the spaceport.

    The Vostochny space center, located in Russia's far eastern Amur region, is expected to reduce Russia's dependency on the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Baikonur is on lease to Russia until 2050.

    The construction of Vostochny began in 2012. The first launch of a carrier rocket is scheduled for 2015, with the first piloted spacecraft takeoff scheduled for 2018.

    Moscow hopes that the new space center will benefit the region's economy as well as enable Russia to conduct more launches.

    Related:

    Russia’s Vostochny Cosmodrome Construction Reaches Home Stretch
    Vostochny Space Center Construction Back On Track for 2015: Rogozin
    Tags:
    rocket launch, Vostochny space center, Dmitry Rogozin, Vladimir Putin, Russia
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