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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

State Promises Cash to Space Agency

The government promised to pay its $44.5 million debt to the Russian Space Agency before the end of the year so that it can complete a long-delayed component of the International Space Station, a top space official said Tuesday.

The announcement followed the space agency's decision, announced Monday, to sell its research time on the international station to the United States for $60 million to raise money for the construction.

Russia's space agency has failed to meet three target dates for the launch of the crew module because of a lack of funds, putting the whole project more than one year behind schedule.

The government's debt will be paid in three installments of $15 million in October, November and December, agency director Yury Koptev said, Itar-Tass said.

It is not clear how much money Russia needs to finish building the crew module, but the government payments alone are not expected to be enough, meaning the deal with NASA will probably stand.