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Russia bails out rocket builder

Khrunichev Space Centre, which builds rocket engines for the Proton satellite launching system, has received more than 20 billion Roubles (about $300 million) in subsidies and loans from Russia’s Roscosmos Space Agency.

Roscosmos (on April 19th) said that the payments will permit Khrunichev to clear some of its long-standing debts to suppliers. However, Roscosmos also stated that Khrunichev’s total indebtedness was significantly higher, and stood at 114 billion Roubles at the end of 2014.

Khrunichev this month is celebrating 20 years since the first Proton rocket went into space with a non-Russian client, carrying SES Astra’s 1F satellite (launched on April 9th 1996).

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