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Officials call for increased European role in space
Posted: Tue, Jun 24, 2003, 8:31 PM ET (0031 GMT)
Key officials with several key European organizations said Tuesday that Europe needs to devote more resources for a variety of space-related projects. The announcement came Tuesday in Paris at the end of a two-day conference that concluded a four-month public consultation period on a proposed European space policy. Officials with the European Union, ESA, and national governments said that Europe needs to spend more on space: they noted that the EU spends only one-sixth as much on space activities as the US. Philippe Busquin, European Research Commissioner, said that Europe needs to double its spending on space activities "in the coming years", possibly through the increased use of public-private partnerships like the one planned for the Galileo satellite navigation system. Other concepts considered include developing dual-use civilian-military satellite systems, improving career prospects for those in the European space industry, and increasing support for ESA's Aurora program for developing technologies needed for human exploration of Mars. The European Commission will issue a final White Paper on European space policy in October.
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