Russia to maintain full funding for satellite navigation program

MOSCOW, May 12 (Xinhua) -- Russia will maintain full funding for its global satellite navigation program despite the current financial crisis, officials said Tuesday.

"Despite economic difficulties, financing in 2009 will remain unchanged, without any cuts or limitations," Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov said at the International Satellite Navigation Forum in Moscow.

Glonass is the Russian equivalent of the U.S. Global Positioning System, or the GPS, designed for both military and civilian use.

Ivanov said the Glonass system currently comprises 20 satellites and six additional satellites will be added this year.

The system needs 18 satellites for navigation services covering Russia and 24 to provide services worldwide.

Editor: Yang Jie | Source: Xinhua