AMUR OBLAST, 12 April (BelTA) – Belarusian specialists will soon be granted an opportunity to participate in the development of the Vostochny Cosmodrome. President of Russia Vladimir Putin made the statement while talking to cosmonauts and personnel of the Vostochny Cosmodrome on 12 April, BelTA has learned.
Vladimir Putin said: “Our joint formation of the infrastructure, which guarantees an independent access to outer space for the Union State of Belarus and Russia, will be an important avenue of our cooperation. Workers and specialists, companies and enterprises of Belarus will very soon get an opportunity to participate in the development of the city of Tsiolkovsky and the Vostochny Cosmodrome. Amendments to the Russian legislation have already been approved by the State Duma. The Federation Council is expected to pass the decision soon. Naturally I will sign the bill into law right away.”
Vladimir Putin also remarked that Belarus and Russia had launched a new major project to make and launch satellites for the remote sensing of Earth. “For it we've pooled the scientific and industrial potential of Russia and leading Belarusian enterprises, which have always been famous for their competences in manufacturing high-precision equipment, most complicated optoelectronic and radiotechnical systems since the Soviet times,” he said.
The Russian leader mentioned the need to respond to challenges in outer space exploration in order to more effectively deal with national development tasks on the ground: reinforce security and technological sovereignty, create cutting-edge products in the area of robot technologies and microelectronics, ecology, healthcare, new energy industry, navigation, and communications. It is necessary to better use capabilities of space information technologies.
The Vostochny Cosmodrome is Russia's first civilian space launch facility. It is located in Amur Oblast near the city of Tsiolkovsky. The cosmodrome is being built to enable independent access to outer space, guaranteed fulfillment of international and commercial space programs, reduce costs of using the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and improve the social and economic situation in Amur Oblast.
The universal launch complex for Soyuz-2 series launch vehicles was built in 2012-2016 as part of the first stage of construction of the Vostochny Cosmodrome. The second stage includes the construction of a launch pad for Angara-A5 launch vehicles and the relevant infrastructure. The work is supposed to be finished by the end of 2022.
In 2019 the Russian state corporation Roscosmos invited Belarus to consider the possibility of participation of Belarusian civil engineering companies in the construction of facilities at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Amur Oblast. In 2020-2022 the Russian side worked on creating the legal framework to allow Belarusian civil engineering companies and specialists to participate in the construction of Vostochny Cosmodrome facilities.
After the relevant federal government agencies considered the proposal on 5 April 2022 the Russian president brought a bill into the State Duma. The bill empowers Roscosmos and its organizations to employ Belarusian citizens and Belarusian companies for work in the restricted-access administrative and territorial unity Tsiolkovsky, including for the sake of providing services relating to the construction and reconstruction of ground-based space infrastructure of the Vostochny Cosmodrome. The bill was given the first reading on 6 April and forwarded to the Federation Council for approval.