Full Text: China's Space Activities in 2016 (8)

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/12/27 10:26:00

V. International Exchanges and Cooperation

The Chinese government holds that all countries in the world have equal rights to peacefully explore, develop and utilize outer space and its celestial bodies, and that all countries' outer space activities should be beneficial to their economic development and social progress, and to the peace, security, survival and development of mankind.

International space cooperation should adhere to the fundamental principles stated in the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, and the Declaration on International Cooperation in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space for the Benefit and in the Interests of All States, Taking into Particular Account the Needs of Developing Countries. China maintains that international exchanges and cooperation should be strengthened on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, peaceful utilization and inclusive development.

1. Fundamental policies

The Chinese government has adopted the following fundamental policies with regard to international space exchanges and cooperation:

- Supporting activities regarding the peaceful use of outer space within the framework of the United Nations;

- Supporting all inter-governmental and non-governmental space organizations' activities that promote development of the space industry;

- Strengthening bilateral and multilateral cooperation which is based on common goals and serves the Belt and Road Initiative;

- Supporting the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization to play an important role in regional space cooperation, and attaching importance to space cooperation under the BRICS cooperation mechanism and within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

- Encouraging and endorsing the efforts of domestic scientific research institutes, industrial enterprises, institutions of higher learning and social organizations to develop international space exchanges and cooperation in diverse forms and at various levels under the guidance of relevant state policies, laws and regulations.

2. Major events

Since 2011 China has signed 43 space cooperation agreements or memoranda of understanding with 29 countries, space agencies and international organizations. It has taken part in relevant activities sponsored by the United Nations and other relevant international organizations, and supported international commercial cooperation in space. These measures have yielded fruitful results.

(1) Bilateral cooperation

- China and Russia signed the Outline of China-Russia Space Cooperation from 2013 to 2017 through the mechanism of the Space Cooperation Sub-committee during the Prime Ministers' Meeting between Russia and China. The two countries have actively promoted cooperation in deep space exploration, manned spaceflight, earth observation, satellite navigation, space-related electronic parts and components, and other areas.

- China and the European Space Agency (ESA) signed the Outline of China-ESA Space Cooperation from 2015 to 2020 within the mechanism of the China-Europe Joint Commission on Space Cooperation. The two sides have declared their determination to cooperate in deep space exploration, space science, earth observation, TT&C services, space debris, and space-related education and training, and launched the panoramic imaging satellite for solar wind and magnetosphere interaction. The two sides have completed cooperation on the Dragon 3 cooperation program.

- China and Brazil, through the mechanism of the Space Cooperation Sub-committee of the Sino-Brazilian High-level Coordination Commission, have conducted constant cooperation in the China-Brazil Earth Resources Satellite (CBERS) program. They successfully launched CBERS-4, signed the Supplementary Agreement of China and Brazil on the Joint Development of CBERS-04A and Cooperation Agreement of China and Brazil on Remote-Sensing Satellite Data and Application, maintaining CBERS data consistency. The two countries also updated CBERS data receiving stations in South Africa and Singapore, expanding CBERS data application regionally and globally. They have worked together to set up the China-Brazil Joint Laboratory for Space Weather.

- China and France, within the mechanism of the Sino-French Joint Commission on Space Cooperation, have engaged in bilateral cooperation on astronomic, ocean and other satellite programs. The two countries have signed a letter of intent on space and climate change, and worked to promote the application of space technology in global climate change governance.

- China and Italy set up the Sino-Italian Joint Commission on Space Cooperation, and have steadily carried forward research and development of the China-Italy Electromagnetic Monitoring Experiment Satellite Program.

- China and Britain have promoted construction of a joint laboratory on space science and technology, upgraded their exchanges in space science and technology personnel, and launched cooperative studies on remote-sensing applications.

- China and Germany have promoted dialogue between their space industry enterprises, and strengthened cooperation in high-end space manufacturing.

- China and the Netherlands signed a memorandum of understanding on space cooperation, promoting cooperation in remote-sensing applications in agriculture, water resources and atmospheric environment, and stating that Chang'e-4 would carry a Dutch payload in its mission.

- China and the United States, within the framework of the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue, carried out a civil space dialogue, stating that the two countries would strengthen cooperation in space debris, space weather, response to global climate change, and related areas.

- China signed space cooperation agreements and established bilateral space cooperation mechanisms with Algeria, Argentina, Belgium, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in such areas as space technology, space applications, and space science, education and training.

(2) Multilateral cooperation

- China takes an active part in activities organized by the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space and its Scientific and Technical Sub-committee and Legal Sub-committee, and negotiations on international space rules such as the long-term sustainability of outer space activities. It signed the Memorandum of Understanding between the China National Space Administration and the United Nations on Earth Observation Data and Technical Support, actively promoting data sharing and cooperation between China's earth observation satellites on the UN platform.

- China supports the relevant work of the Beijing office of the United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response. The UN set up the Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (China) in Beijing to promote personnel training in the international space arena.

- Within the framework of the Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO), China actively participated in the APSCO Joint Small Multi-mission Satellite Constellation Program. It also organized the APSCO Development Strategy Forum with the theme of "the Belt and Road Initiative for Facilitating Regional Capacity Building of the Asia-Pacific Countries," at which the Beijing Declaration was adopted.

- China and the space agencies of Brazil, Russia, India, and South Africa co-sponsored and actively promoted cooperation in the BRICS remote-sensing satellite constellation. (more)

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