PRESS RELEASE – EUROPEAN COMMISSION – High Representative/Vice-President Borrell and Commissioner Breton present European space policy priorities for 2023 at the Space Conference

Today, at the 15th European Space Conference, High-Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner for Internal Market, Thierry Breton, presented the priorities for the 2023 European Space policy and the challenges ahead, focusing on competitiveness, resilience, sovereignty, and security of the European Union in space.

High Representative/Vice-President Borrell highlighted the geopolitical context and importance of space, which has become even more evident since Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine. The Strategic Compass identifies space as a strategic domain and the need for joint action to address the common threats.

To enhance the Union’s strategic standing in the geopolitical context, the High Representative and Commissioner Breton are planning to present an EU Space Strategy for Security and Defence this year. As 2023 will be the year to start implementing IRIS², the new flagship programme for space-based secured connectivity, Commissioner Breton called on the European space industry to mobilise the necessary investments, and to build functional alliances to submit innovative and agile commercial services. Regarding innovation, the CASSINI initiative is running at full speed to turn Europe into a hub of space entrepreneurship, with more than 100 space-tech start-ups already receiving access to finance, matchmaking and business development. He also announced the selection of nine New Space companies to become suppliers of Copernicus Contribution Missions data, each of them receiving five-year contracts worth €5 million.

This year’s Conference focuses on ‘Securing the Future of Europe in Space’. It will include dedicated sessions on the European space policy, its technological and industrial challenges, IRIS², the Union’s Secure Connectivity Programme, entrepreneurship, innovation and resilience of the spatial sector. The full programme is available online.

On Wednesday, Commissioner Gabriel will deliver a closing speech at the conference together with the Italian astronaut, Samantha Cristoforetti. She will recall the relevance of the New European Innovation Agenda to enhance Europe’s strategic autonomy and attract talent in Europe. She will also evoke how the space programme under Horizon Europe can address our major societal challenges. All speeches are available on EbS.

Source: Cyprus News Agency