ESA, EU Sign Joint Statement of Shared Visions and Goals

ESA logoBRUSSELS, 26 October 2016 (ESA PR) — A ‘Joint Statement on Shared Vision and Goals for the Future of European Space’ was signed by ESA Director General Jan Woerner and European Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska in Brussels today.

In the past two Space Councils, in an informal setting under the EU Council Presidency of Luxembourg and the Netherlands, the Member States of ESA and the EU have requested ESA and the EC together to come up with a set of joint visions and goals for the future of European space.

Over the past months, a joint drafting team with representatives from ESA and the EU worked together with the aim of identifying these common visions and goals for the two institutions to collaborate in the years to come. These visions and goals were confirmed in September by the ESA Council and Council of the EU as guiding principles for the future cooperation.

Space is part of everyday life of the European citizens. Europe needs to unleash its full potential as an enabler in pushing the frontiers of knowledge, stimulating jobs and sustainable growth, supporting decision and policy making, providing socioeconomic benefits, and inspiring and motivating the next generations.

The common European vision is that Europe remains a world-class actor in space and a partner of choice on the international scene. By 2030, Europe should be able to fully benefit from its space solutions to implement its policies, to strengthen European values and security, improve knowledge and foster prosperity. Every single European citizen should benefit from Europe’s space capacities and capabilities.

The goals identified for the years to come are to:

  • maximise the integration of space into European society and economy, by increasing the use of space technologies and applications to support public policies, providing effective solutions to the big societal challenges faced by Europe and the world, strengthening synergies between civilian and security activities in the fields of navigation, communication and observation, including through monitoring borders, land and maritime security conditions;
  • foster a globally competitive European space sector, by supporting research, innovation, entrepreneurship for growth and jobs across all Member States, and seizing larger shares of global markets;
  • ensure European autonomy in accessing and using space in a safe and secure environment, and in particular consolidate and protect its infrastructures, including against cyber threats.

In the Joint Statement the two institutions state that in order to achieve these goals, the EU and ESA emphasise their intention to reinforce their cooperation in the future as foreseen in the ESA/EU Framework Agreement of 2004. The ESA Director General Jan Woerner is using the shared vision and goals as a high-level policy guiding element in preparing his Director General’s proposal to ESA Member States for the 2016 Council at ministerial level which will take place on 1-2 December in Lucerne, Switzerland.

  • mlc449

    Just make ESA an agency of the EU altogether. No more of these inefficient arrangements between differing organisations. If Norway and Switzerland want to be part of ESA they should join the EU. No more cherry picking.

    Oh, and merge the national space agencies fully into ESA.

  • Kapitalist

    The EU will soon not exist anymore. You know, now that the UK has left and in spring when France elects Marine Lepen, and because of the escalating euro and Russia and migration crises Angela Merkel won’t be reelected next autumn. Then there’s only the anti-EU periphery states left in the EU. ESA still has got a (faint) chance of surviving in 2018 when the EU has been abolished.

    National space agencies have a huge advantage over the international space programs, which suddenly are cut off because of irrelevant issues like a US president’s budget or the political status of a peninsula in the Black Sea. National programs have only one single set of Byzantine bureaucracy to deal with and is not sensitive to random international clownery of our elected “leaders”.

  • JamesG

    What he is saying is that ESA should be more like a unified space agency instead of the confederation of national space agencies it is now. But that really wouldn’t necessarily make it more efficient or effective. It would undoubtedly be all of the same faces just wearing different colour name badges.

  • mlc449

    The stuff of a fantasist. The EU is going nowhere, the Nazi Le Pen will fail yet again. And Merkel likely being dumped will prove to be a blessing for the EU as the bloc can then move past her insane pro-austerity policies.

    Why do you isolationists always seek to destroy closer international cooperation? It sickens me the way you lot behave.

  • Kapitalist

    Part of Europe will become the Middle East. A stone age wasteland of tyranny where there exists no artifacts only assholes pointed to the God sky, and camel nomad raping you at will. Exactly like it has been in all other Middle Eastern countries since 1000+ years. And it will never ever change until humanity has exterminated itself by inbreeding genetic dysfunctions. Islam is isolationist, totally intolerant and the only guys in the world who make war, terrorism and who slaughter people because of their sex and religion. And who are trying to murder YOU and ME here and now where we are, by blowing themselves up. It is true! The muslims have murdered many thousands of innocent people that way. You might be next.

    There exists no kind of resistance at all against the worst thinkable islam murderism in Western Europe. Therefor it is extremely obvious that the worst murderous islamists will conquer all of Western Europe. Within a few years hundreds of millions of Western Europeans will die. Space industry will be completely abolished when everyone tries to bake bread in order to survive one day at a time.

    Don’t believe me!? Look at the history of the entire Middle East! Without exception. Since 1400 years.

  • Kapitalist

    Politically impossible!
    The strength of ESA today is that it has nothing to do with the EU. The EU is Titanic after it hit the ice berg. Any association with it means going to the bottom and drowning everyone. ESA should try to get extra-European. Joining with China, India and private companies. Cutting any ties with the EU is the only survivable way to go. If they think they can contribute with anything more than what the national space agencies can do themselves. Maybe decentralization is the best thing now.