The production rate of Topol-M missiles has slowed down somewhat in the last few years - only four missiles were deployed in 2004 and two - in 2005. The plan for 2006 calls for deployment of six or seven missiles, three of which will be mobile. According to General Alexei Moskovskiy, the chief of the armament of the Russian armed forces, the state acquisition program approved an increase of this rate in the coming years. Moskovskiy did not mention any specific numbers, but I would not expect a dramatic change. I would guess that we could expect about nine missiles deployed annually, but we will have to wait and see.

Interestingly enough, when Moskovskiy was asked about the plans to build a new liquid-fuel missile he was non-committal and did not reject this possibility, saying that "everything that advances effectiveness of the strategic forces is being developed and will be developed". It appears that while Topol-M is gaining the upper hand, the debate about new missiles is not yet over. If only the oil prices would stay high.