Microwave Journal

EC Adopts European Space Policy

June 14, 2007

The European Commission has adopted the European Space Policy, which reflects the key strategic importance that space systems and space applications have for Europe, in order to live up to its global leadership aspirations in selected areas. This communication marks a milestone for the development of space policy in Europe providing a European identity to space. It is a joint policy document of the European Commission and the Director General of the European Space Agency (ESA).

The joint document aims to preserve EU autonomous access to space and to allow the EU to exert its global responsibility in selected areas in accordance with European interests and values. For the first time, a European Space Programme will be established and space activities at national and European level will be coordinated to achieve transparency and complementary actions.

More synergy and coordination between defence and civil space programmes and technologies will be developed, in full respect of respective competencies, so that each sector can take maximum advantage of the investments of the other. A joint international relations strategy will be developed between ESA and EU Member States.

This will ensure the integration of space policy into a range of the EU’s relationships with third countries and a more coherent European approach to partners. In the area of satellite applications the EU and ESA have established GALILEO and GMES. The strategic value of these systems will be greatly enhanced if the information they provide can be integrated, together with satellite communications and terrestrial networks.