European space policy will take off before the end of 2005

The second European ?¨Space Council?Æ was held today in Luxembourg.
Ministers from the European Union (EU) and/or Space Agency (ESA) Member
States encouraged the Commission to complete its proposal for a
European space policy and programme due to be approved at a third Space
Council meeting planned for the end of November 2005. For the first
time, there has been a consensus of 29 European countries on a new
European approach in the space sector.
roles of the different actors have been clarified, leading to a better
use of existing resources. The Commission has proposed uniting
resources in Europe with the objective of making the EU a key player in
the space sector.
Commission Vice President G¬?nter
Verheugen stated: “I am grateful for the full support the Space Council
has given the Commission today. We will now work full speed ahead and
complete our proposal for a European space policy and programme. This
will identify programme priorities for future European development of
space applications.”
ESA Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain
added: ?¨ESA has just turned 30. Thanks to the continuous support of its
Member States, it has grown to make the European space sector one of
the foremost competitors in the world and at the same time has become a
respected partner. Now the European space policy is being integrated
within the wider ambitions of Europe and space is set to become a much
larger and more integrated undertaking in our future. ESA is prepared
to adapt in order to take on an even greater role for Europe.?Æ
The Galileo navigation satellite programme
and the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) programme
are identified as ?´flagship?? activities for the European Space Policy.
Funding of space activities is already incorporated in the Commission
proposal for the 7th Framework Programme of research and development.
An important element for the Member States will be to decide the extent
to which they either direct their national initiatives towards an
enhanced European programme of space activities or continue to fund
activities at national level. A key element will be the inclusion in
the European Space Programme of space systems to support security
EU Member States will also have to ensure that the ambitions of the
space programme are taken into account in the next Financial
More information at EU
Author: EARSC

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