France to buy 10 Russian space rockets
C'est l'economie, stupide!
SOCHI, Russia. Sept 20 (Interfax) - France has signed a contract to buy ten Soyuz-ST space launch vehicles from Russia, said the head of the Arianespace company, a French space launch services provider. The rockets will be launched from French Guiana, Arianespace Chairman and chief executive Jean-Yves Le Gall told reporters. He said the first launch was scheduled for the end of 2009 and that, starting with 2010, the company planned to launch three or four Soyuz-ST rockets a year in addition to Ariane rockets, which are European launch vehicles. Le Gall valued the deal, whose signatories are Arianespace and the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), at between $300 million and $400 million.