Roscosmos: No Contracts Signed Yet With Space Adventures for Billionaut Flights

A Russian Soyuz spacecraft in orbit

An interesting notice from the Roscosmos website:

Space Adventures, which had announced the conclusion of an agreement with Russian Federal Space Agency and Rocket Space Corporation Energia (RSC Energia) to commercially offer three seats on the Soyuz spacecraft bound for the International Space Station (ISS), beginning in 2013, has not signed any contract neither with Roscosmos, nor with RSC-E, Roscosmos Human Spaceflight Directorate Head Alexey Krasnov told Marker.

According to Krasnov, the a.m. negotiations may commence in spring, provided that Space Adventures finds funding for increasing of Soyuz production, from four to five space vehicles per year.

“This release is a kind of indicator of Space Adventure’s intentions and find necessary funding in the market to finance construction of an additional Soyuz. The number of Soyuzes per year may be increased starting from 2014, provided that the company finds the money”, Krasnov stated, adding that Space Adventures shall finance the additional Soyuz in order to restart touristic space missions.

“Only after that, we will commence discussions with our international partners in the ISS program… There are many issues here, but they have not been studied so far, as we don’t have any subject agreement with Space Adventures”, Roscosmos official explains.

It’s interesting that there is no firm agreement and that flights could begin a year later than was previously stated.