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Al Romaithi ... aiming to reach Mars.

UAE space policy aims to build strong sector

ABU DHABI, September 7, 2016

The UAE Space Agency has announced details of its National Space Sector Policy, which aims to build a strong and sustainable space sector that supports and protects national interests and related vital industries.

The document was approved on September 4 by the Council of Ministers, headed by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

The space sector will contribute to economic growth and diversification, strengthening specialised Emirati skillsets and developing scientific and hi-tech capabilities. It also seeks to nurture and grow a culture of innovation and enhance the UAE’s status on regional and global levels.

The introduction to the policy places emphasis on the UAE’s historical relationship with space, highlighting an ancestral mastery of astronomy and navigation of land and sea. The foreword also underlines the strategic vision of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, which cemented the UAE’s limitless interest and ambition in space, noting that Sheikh Zayed had met with a Nasa delegation from the Apollo team in the 1970s.

Since that time, the UAE has managed to establish economic principles, infrastructure and Emirati capabilities that have enabled the country to contribute to deep space exploration and led it to a leading position for space activity in the region.

The policy represents a major turning point in strengthening, organising and developing the national space sector in a sustainable manner.

These efforts began in 2014 with the founding of the UAE Space Agency — the region’s first national space agency — and coincided with the UAE leadership’s announcement of its intention to explore Mars and its atmosphere. The UAE Mars mission will launch in 2020.

The document outlines core principles for the space sector, which fall in line with the UAE’s vision and strategic planning across other sectors. Space sector activities will be used to provide a better quality of life for all UAE citizens, as well as support national interests by providing security and improving crisis and disaster responses.

The principles within the policy also cover economic growth and diversification through continued development of space sector capabilities. In addition, the policy calls for strengthening the cooperation between government and private sectors on a local level, and establishing mutually beneficial international partnerships that adhere to international laws and treaties.

The policy compiles the UAE’s goals and ambitions for space sector activity, including support for key industries and the development of a sustainable, competitive and diverse commercial space industry. Other goals include conducting space missions that will increase scientific knowledge, developing technologies and national capabilities and driving innovation. The policy also aims to promote a stable and sustainable space environment that supports commercial and government space activities.

The national policy identifies the basic enabling capabilities necessary for realizing its aims. These include an effective and appealing regulatory environment, continued outreach that highlights the importance of space activity, preparing Emiratis for specialization in the space sector and effective management of satellites in orbit. Other enabling capabilities include innovative state-run science and technology programs, cooperation and collaboration on national, regional and global levels, financial support and appropriate investments, in addition to supporting infrastructure.

Dr Khalifa Al Romaithi, chairman of the UAE Space Agency, said: “The national space sector policy stems from the leadership’s vision to become a leading nation in space sciences and to reach Mars on the state’s fiftieth anniversary.”

Al Romaithi explained that the national space policy clarifies the UAE government’s approach, ambitions and priorities for the space sector. - TradeArabia News Service




Tags: agency | policy | Space |

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