Humankind has always been fascinated by space flight. It symbolises boundlessness and exploration like no other endeavour. In fact, space activities aim not only to explore space, but also to improve life on Earth today.
From medicine and biology to robotics and material science, research in space allows science and thus humanity to progress. The International Space Station is of outstanding value in this regard.
As these examples show, the European space sector is among the most advanced in the world and is crucial in addressing society’s most pressing issues. Result of the last ESA Ministerial Conference in December 2016 and next one in 2019 are crucial to safeguard Europe’s competitiveness in space technology and its independent access to space.
The complementary outstanding support and involvement of the EU both in bn€ programs and in the European Space strategy, the specific European Space industrial policy, and the economic diplomacy, are decisive to reinforce the competitiveness of the European space industry. Industry expects that the next EU budget under preparation should extend its support : as much of the interconnected global economy depends on space technology, both combined ESA and EU actions coupled with national space investments are the main roots to prepare the growth of this strategic sector, resulting in significant direct employment.
In Europe, Airbus is the top satellite industrial player. It has a world leading position in manufacturing and export of Earth observation satellite systems is has a leading role in the access to space via its affiliate company ArianeGroup. With cutting-edge design, production and testing capabilities covering the full portfolio of space activities, Airbus is one of the world leader to design, develop and operate major space systems.