"We don't want the man to just step on the moon," Roscosmos chief Vladimir Popovkin said in a radio interview Thursday.
"Today, we know enough about it, we know that there is water in its polar areas," he said, and "we are now discussing how to begin [the moon's] exploration with NASA and the European Space Agency."
Talk of a base harkens back to Cold War-era plans to create a permanent outpost on the moon, a subject of interest to Soviet and U.S. scientists since the late 1950s, RIA Novosti reported.
Popovkin mentioned two options, to "either to set up a base on the moon or to launch a station to orbit around it."
Russia is proceeding with plans to send two unmanned missions to the moon by 2020, the Luna Glob and the Luna Resource, Popovkin said.