|Type||Open joint-stock company|
On 26 February 1985, the Ministry of General Machine Building of the USSR issued an order that formed the Main Department for the creation and use of space technology for the national economy and scientific research – Glavkosmos of the USSR.
Although it was originally envisioned to command all Soviet space activities it worked more as a marketing and coordinating body than an executive agency. The United States imposed sanctions on the company in May 1992, after it agreed in January 1991 to transfer technology for the production of KVD-1 cryogenic rocket engines to the Indian Space Research Organisation.
In Soviet times, Glavkosmos was the prime authority for implementing co-operative agreements with foreign bodies, with activities including commercial utilisation of Soviet systems and flying foreign cosmonauts aboard Soviet spacecraft. After the breakup of the Soviet Union and the creation of the Russian Federal Space Agency it is concerned with converting military technology to civil applications and commercialisation of Russian space technology.
Today the key objectives of Glavkosmos are the promotion of the Russian space industry to the world markets and management of complex international space projects. One of the key international projects of Glavkosmos is a joint Russian-European program Soyuz at the Guiana Space Centre, where Glavkosmos is the main contract integrator for all the Russian rocket and space industry entities involved. Glavkosmos is in charge of coordination with the French company Arianespace at all phases: Arianespace is responsible for launch operations and operates the Ariane 5, Vega and Soyuz launch sites at the Guiana Space Centre.