Russia and China agreed Tuesday to build a lunar space station, as Moscow seeks to modernise its extraterrestrial might and catch up with the United States in the space race.
Russia, which sent the first man into space during the Soviet Union, has been lagging behind Washington and Beijing in the exploration of the Moon and Mars.
Russia's space agency Roscosmos said in a statement that a memorandum was signed by its head Dmitry Rogozin and Zhang Kejian of China's National Space Administration (CNSA).
It said the lunar station will be designed as a "complex of experimental research facilities created on the surface and/or in the orbit of the Moon".
It would be available for use by other interested countries and international partners, the statement said, without details about the completion date.