MOSCOW, September 27 (RIA Novosti)
- Russia Denies ‘Systemic Crisis’ in Space Industry
- Russian Space Official Resigns After Satellite Failure
- Roscosmos Ready to Give Phobos-Grunt Second Try
Russia needs a leaner space industry, and that means significant job cuts, Vladimir Popovkin, head of Russia’s Space Agency Roscosmos, said on Thursday.
“Unless we act now – we will cease to be competitive,” he warned.
Speaking about the need for reform, Popovkin noted that “reorganizing Roscosmos into a holding company will ensure maximum staffing” across the sector.
“If today over 250 (thousand) people are employed, then we calculate that the maximum should be 150-170” he said during a lecture for science and technology students.
In recent years Russia’s space program has suffered a series of failures, from lost satellites and abortive launches to Phobos-Grunt’s failure to leave low earth orbit.
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.