The French president will call on Europe on Wednesday to “engage strongly in international competition” to become a “major player” in space.
French President Emmanuel Macron will call on Europe on Wednesday to “engage strongly in international competition” to become a “major player” in space, during a meeting of EU ministers in Toulouse (south-west ), the Elysée announced on Tuesday. Space is “at the heart of questions of European sovereignty”, explained the presidency to justify the presence of the Head of State, quasi-candidate for the presidential election in April, at this meeting organized within the framework of the French presidency. of the Council of the EU.
Emmanuel Macron will emphasize that “space is once again becoming an issue of conquest”, in particular with “the emergence of private actors” in the forefront of which the American SpaceX, of billionaire Elon Musk, according to her.
During this meeting, European ministers are due to discuss issues relating to connectivity constellations and space traffic management, in particular the monitoring of debris and satellites in orbit. They will also meet within the framework of the European Space Agency (ESA). ), which also includes the United Kingdom, Norway, Switzerland or Canada, to discuss the exploration of space and the climate, with the Copernicus project.
A “subject that will become extremely strategic in the coming years”
The objective is to “set ambitions” which will give rise to decisions at the ESA ministerial conference in November in Paris, which will have to decide on its budget for the coming years. The European Commission was due to present Tuesday in Strasbourg (east), on the sidelines of the European Parliament session, several communications and a regulation on secure connectivity and space traffic management.
The launch of a constellation of satellites is the most ambitious of these proposals. It is a “subject which will become extremely strategic in the coming years” because “for reasons of space congestion, there will be little space, hence the urgency for Europe to position”, underlines the Elysée.
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