Nation considers space-based ‘Silk Road of satellites’ to provide data services

By Jiang Jie Source:Global Times Published: 2015-5-31 22:33:01

China can build a "space-based Silk Road" by strengthening cooperation in satellite services with other countries, with the aim of supporting the country's "One Belt, One Road" initiative, industry experts said over the weekend.

Speaking at the 2nd China International Satellite Service Business Matching Event held Friday, local authorities along the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road discussed how they could participate in the creation of a space-based Silk Road.

The space-based Silk Road initiative was proposed in 2014 by the International Alliance of Satellite Application Service (ASAS), a China-based organization of aerospace companies, institutions and scholars that promotes Chinese satellite services around the world.

Wang Jiubin, deputy mayor of Yinchuan, capital of Northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, said that the China-Arab satellite data service industrial park in the city will be a key platform for China to offer data services to Arab countries and regions.

"China's satellite technology, which offers high quality and low costs, can meet demand in the Arab world," Wang said.

Northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region also has an advantage, because it is one of the provincial regions with the largest number of ground stations for high-resolution earth observation satellites, which facilitates data services for Central Asia, Li Hu, chief engineer at the Xinjiang Satellite Application Engineering Center, told the forum.

China has more than 120 satellites in orbit, including communications, navigation and meteorological satellites. The space-based Silk Road will use dozens of these satellites to meet the communication and remote-sensing application demand for the "One Belt, One Road" initiative, according to Wang Zhongguo, executive vice-president of the ASAS.

"The space-based Silk Road will help Chinese companies and governments involved in the program to exchange information, especially for projects in regions with limited communication and transportation capacity," Wang told the Global Times in April.

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