The committee co-ordinating work on the Joint Air Defence (JAD) programme to establish an integrated air defence system across the CIS has emerged from a meeting in Moscow promising progress on the project, despite a serious lack of funding.

CIS defence ministers had promised to provide 101 billion roubles ($17 million), with Russia agreeing to take on about half the cost. So far, however, only 6 billion roubles has been made available, which has been spent on developing air-defence infrastructure in Belorussia, Georgia and Kyrgizia.

Russia's Air Defence commander-in-chief, General of the Army Victor Prudnikov, head of the JAD committee, believes that, despite the shortfall, air-defence elements of the system will be built in Georgia, Kyrgizia and Tadjikistan by the end of 1998, with improvements due in Armenia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. He says that the pending amalgamation of Russia's Air Defence and Air Force will help form the basis of full operational command and control for the JAD system across the CIS.

Source: Flight International