European Space Agency Hopes UK Stay On-Board EU Programmes

European Space Agency Hopes UK Stay On-Board EU Programmes
Although the UK's membership is not in question, it may be excluded from some ESA projects funded by the EU - Image Source: European Space Agency

THE EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY (ESA) hopes that Britain can remain on-board their EU-funded space programmes after Brexit.

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The ESA has expressed their desire for Britain to remain in EU-funded European space programmes after they leave the bloc. As the space agency is non-governmental Britain’s membership is not in question, though certain projects that rely on EU funding could pose issues for future British collaboration in some programmes.

These include the Copernicus satellite programme, which has done groundbreaking work in monitoring the Earth. It is funded directly by the EU via its member states and therefore poses a problem to future British collaboration on the widescale project.

The ESA’s general director Jan Woerner said he hoped the UK’s departure from the EU would not hinder its important role in the ESA. “We have not only the UK we have also Switzerland and Norway”, he said, highlighting the role of other non-EU countries in the agency.

He said Norway and Switzerland “have agreements with the EU and I hope that also the UK will have agreements in the future which allows us to forget about Brexit” in relation to Britain’s role in the ESA’s ambitious space projects.

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