Wu Yanhua, Deputy Head of China National Space Administration (CNSA), stated that Russia and China will probably sign an intergovernmental agreement on the lunar station and the related cooperation by the end of 2022.
"Currently, inter-governmental consultations between China and Russia on an agreement on creating an International Scientific Lunar Station are in full swing," he told a press conference. "Basically, the sides have reached a consensus. It is quite likely that it may be signed as soon as possible this year," Wu Yanhua said.
Earlier, on January 25 Russia’s Ambassador to China Andrey Denisov said that a Russia-China inter-governmental agreement on cooperation in creating a lunar station was practically ready and could be signed soon. Speaking on the Russian-Chinese cooperation in the domain, the Russian diplomat underlined the long-term character of the program. He also stated that at the moment the countries are working within the framework of a program of cooperation in outer space for 2018-2022 and that the new five-year program is underway.
Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos and China National Space Administration unveiled a roadmap of an international scientific lunar station at the Global Space Exploration Conference 2021 (GLEX 2021) in St. Petersburg in June 2021.
Under the roadmap, the construction of the lunar station is expected to be completed by 2035. Two missions are planned in 2026-2030 to test the technologies of landing and cargo delivery and the transportation of lunar soil samples to Earth. The plans envisage developing infrastructure in orbit and on the Moon’s surface in 2031-2035, in particular, communications systems, electric power, research, and other equipment.
Pursuant to the roadmap, the station’s transport infrastructure will include research and service lunar rovers and also a jumping robot. The participating sides are also planning to equip the station with several smart mini-rovers to explore the surface of the Earth’s natural satellite.