Kazakhstan and Russia work on phased termination of Baikonur lease
Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec. 10 / Trend E. Kosolapova/
Kazakhstan and Russia are developing a new agreement envisaging a phased termination of cosmodrome Baikonur leasing , Novosti-Kazakhstan quoted the head of Kazakh National Space Agency Kazcosmos Talgat Musabayev as saying.
"The head of state has set us the task and has already agreed with Vladimir Putin to develop a new comprehensive agreement on Baikonur, which can envisage termination of its leasing," Musabayev said in Kazakh Majilis (Parliament's lower chamber) on Monday.
According to Kazcosmos head, the lease termination will be implemented in phases.
"We do not plan to stop leasing in a moment, such action will cause much troubles. We plan to do it by stages," Musabayev said.
"The first stage includes Zenith. This is the right flank of Baikonu cosmodrome. Now, if we stop its leasing and become its full participants, it will be Kazakhstan's great step forward," he said.
In particular, the issue of termination of the city of Baikonur leasing is being discussed, Musabayev said.
"The city can be transferred to Kazakhstan's jurisdiction. The issue is being developed now," Kazcosmos head said.
The Baikonur Cosmodrome is the world's first and largest operational space launch facility. It is located in the desert steppe of Kazakhstan. It is leased by the Kazakh government to Russia (currently until 2050) and is managed jointly by the Russian Federal Space Agency and the Russian Space Forces. Under the current Russian space program, Baikonur remains a busy space port, with numerous commercial, military and scientific missions being launched annually.