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Russian Space Chief Wants Elon Musk Over for Tea

"I already set the teakettle on heat," Dmitry Rogozin told CNN. 

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Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s new space chief, said in a recent interview he’d love for Russian oligarchs to follow the lead of Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson by launching into space. He also mentioned wanting Elon Musk over for tea. 

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"I like what your people are doing — people who spend their own money on things useful for overall society," Rogozin told CNN in his first Western media interview since becoming director general of Roscosmos.

He said Russian millionaires “prefer to invest more in yachts rather than in spaceships,” but he’s hopeful their children “will be much more wise creatures.”

Related: Musk Chirps Bezos About His 'Full-Time Job'

He discussed the respect he has for SpaceX founder Elon Musk, who “realizes many of the ideas and thoughts that we wanted to realize, but did not get to because, after the breakup of the Soviet Union, our space program halted for some time.”

From there, he extended an offer to Musk to join him as a guest of his family in Russia to discuss space exploration, extraterrestrial life and how humans can use the frontier to preserve earthly life. 

“I already set the teakettle on heat,” he told CNN. 

As the outlet noted, Rogozin has taken swipes at Musk and SpaceX before. Last December, he posted a photo of Roscosmos specialists surrounded by snow as they recovered a piece of a Soyuz rocket.

He quipped that the Russian terrain wasn’t like the Texas town where Musk’s company is building the world’s biggest rocket, then added, “This is Yakutia in winter. I wonder if gentle SpaceX is able to work in such conditions?”