European companies offering Earth Observation (EO) products and services see growth in export business as a major target for the next few years. But most are small or micro-sized and, as a result of their scale, face strong barriers for international business. A European effort on Economic Diplomacy can help companies overcome these barriers.
Alongside the strong industrial competences, the European Copernicus programme is seen as being a major asset to drive growth for Europe. It is a major policy tool by which policy makers can help industry gain competitive advantage for Europe and help drive business growth. Many countries are watching this European effort and at the same time are striving to develop their own competing assets. As Copernicus becomes fully operational, now is the time to take advantage of this European flagship programme in the global market, before others have time to react.
The free and open data policy gives a great deal of diplomatic credit to Europe. But this policy helps non-European companies as much as European ones. If the European Union (EU) is to take full advantage of the investment in Copernicus then a concerted effort is necessary between public and private actors.
In recognition and anticipation, companies are encouraging EARSC to increase its activities with the goal to help them develop new business in international markets. EARSC is ready to play a key role on behalf of its members and welcomes the increased focus from the European Commission (EC) on this same goal. One step could be to establish an Internationalisation Office to act as a source and focus for expertise available to both industry and to the engaged public stakeholders.