in Space

UK welcomes Canadian space sector

Posted 3 March 2020 · Add Comment

A large space sector delegation from Canada touches down in the UK this week to explore new partnerships and seek valuable opportunities to use space data, supported by the UK Space Agency.

Satellite image of Canada at night, showing Aurora over northern Canada.
Courtesy UK Space Agency / copyright ESA/NASA

More than 20 representatives from the Canadian space industry and government will visit the Harwell Space Cluster in Oxfordshire as well as organisations in London, Surrey Research Park and Glasgow’s thriving space sector from 2nd-6th March.

The visit, led by the High Commission of Canada, the Canadian Space Agency, the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Programme and Satellite Canada Innovation Network, builds on the close ties between Canada and the UK and will look at collaborative research and commercial opportunities in the exploitation of space data.

Alice Bunn, International Director at the UK Space Agency, said: "It is great to welcome such a large delegation of industry and government representatives from Canada to the UK this week.

"International collaboration with our closest partners, is a key priority for the UK Space Agency and I hope the Canadian delegation will get to see the breadth of opportunity and ambition in the UK, particularly in the use of space-data for societal and commercial benefit.

"I look forward to hearing what prospects can be identified and pursued in the future between the UK and Canadian space sectors."

Along with the UK Space Agency, the visit is also supported by the Satellite Applications Catapult in Harwell, the Knowledge Transfer Network, Scottish Development International, Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications and Enterprise Europe Network.

Nathalie Dubé, Minister-Councillor and Senior Trade Commissioner, said: "Canada and the UK both have highly innovative space sectors, dynamic ecosystems for satellite applications and extensive capabilities in digital and artificial intelligence-based technologies.

"Both countries also view the space sector as a priority and are currently investing significantly in new and ambitious space strategies. This strategic alignment of capability and ambition make this an ideal time to start a conversation about how much more could be achieved if we work together."

The UK space sector employs 42,000 people and generates an income of £14.8 billion each year, with the value of exports standing at £5.5 billion.

The UK continues to be a leading member of ESA, which is independent of the EU, having committed a record investment of £374 million per year in November 2019.

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