California Space Authority Signs Agreement with French Aerospace Valley

California Space Authority


The California Space Authority (CSA) and the French Aerospace Valley Association (FAV), entered into a cooperative agreement today for the purpose of improving and fostering space enterprise workforce and economic development between their members.

Signed at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget, France, the Agreement on Space Enterprise Networking will stimulate and promote collaborative activities in space enterprise development between California and France.

“The global nature of the space industry in the 21st Century requires California’s space enterprise community to reach across state and national boundaries,” stated The Honorable Andrea Seastrand, Executive Director of CSA. “This agreement represents a launch pad for enhancing international relationships and broadens the gateway to the European market for CSA’s members, particularly for small and medium-sized aerospace suppliers and entrepreneurs.”

Representing CSA in Le Bourget at the Paris Air Show was James E. Long, a long-standing member of the CSA Board of Directors and the Executive Director of Programs and Business Development for Aerojet. “Although we are located on separate continents, we recognize that the aerospace industry shares common challenges concerning research, education and trade. We believe that the collaboration manifested in this Agreement will enhance our ability to inspire students, to foster research and to bring the best of the best into our industry,” Long stated during the signing ceremony, which was staged at the Paris Observatory. The objectives of the Agreement focus on three key areas: education and workforce talent preparedness, economic development and entrepreneurial innovation, and the importance of openness in international trade. The Agreement encourages collaborative educational and research efforts and innovative practices. It connects member companies by creating business networking opportunities through a “spacetech bridge” by a common aerospace portal or “connectory.” In addition, the Agreement is intended to increase trade and investment by addressing barriers to competition and growth.

The California Space Authority is a member-based, nonprofit organization representing the interests of California’s diverse space enterprise community and was designated as the State of California’s official Spaceport Authority in 2004. California space enterprise generated over $31 billion in direct revenues and supported 71,000 direct jobs in 2007. Presently, California enjoys twenty-one percent of the global space market.

The French Aerospace Valley Association, located in southwestern France and encompassing the French Regions of Aquitaine and Midi-Pyrenees including the cities of Toulouse and Bordeaux, was designated by the French National Government as a “global innovative cluster” for aeronautics, space and embedded systems in 2005. Aerospace activities represented in the area by FAV support an economic impact of $10 billion in revenues generated by 94,000 direct jobs.

“We are pleased to have developed a relationship with the French Aerospace Valley Association and its many high-tech member companies. The groundwork being laid today will foster new relationships and build economic alliances between the members of our two organizations,” concluded Mrs. Seastrand.