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UK and United Arab Emirates increase collaboration in space

Signed by the UK Space Agency Chief Executive, Dr David Parker, and H.E Dr Khalifa Al Romaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, the MoU allows for extensive cooperative activities in the field of space between the UK and the UAE, including partnerships in scientific missions and outreach efforts.

Today’s agreement builds upon decades of friendship and strategic partnership between the UK and UAE.

David Parker, CEO of the UK Space Agency, said:

We are extremely proud of this memorandum. This collaboration in the space field is a sign of the strong desire of our two countries to work together, and confirms the commitment of the UK to become a partner of the UAE Space Agency,”

British Ambassador to United Arab Emirates, Philip Parham, added:

With the signing of this MoU, the broad and deep UK and UAE strategic partnership has now reached space. This will open the way for extensive cooperation and partnership in space research, scientific missions and popular outreach. The UK is one of the world leaders in space exploration and technology: UK technology was key to the world’s first collaborative satellite and the most distant probe landing ever achieved – Ariel 1 and Huygens respectively. I’m excited to imagine the potential, the uncharted frontiers and the many benefits which the UAE and UK can realise together in this field.

The MoU includes an extensive framework for cooperation between the UK Space Agency and the UAE Space Agency, including conception and implementation of joint studies and projects, the exchange of scientific data and information, an exchange of personnel and training of specialists between the two agencies, as well as government activities related to space policy, public outreach and human development.

H.E Dr Khalifa Al Romaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency said:

The UAE enjoys a strong relationship with the United Kingdom in various fields, including education, business, science and culture. We are looking forward to further augmenting this relationship via the new MoU, which is in line with our strategic plans to expand collaboration with the UK.

Al Romaithi added:

We discussed with our English counterparts opportunities to develop aspects of collaboration in areas of common interest and future prospects. We look forward to exchanging expertise, participating in joint studies as well as holding joint conferences and symposia. All of these undertakings will benefit the space agencies of both nations and strengthen the ties between our people.

H.E Dr. Mohammed Al Ahbabi, Director General of the UAE Space Agency spoke about the UAE space sector and the state’s strategy, objectives, initiatives, and programs in this field, in addition to the agency’s strategic priorities.

Al Ahbabi said:

The UAE Space Agency recognizes the importance of space exploration in the greater context of advancing humanities legacy. We are firm believers in working together with all competent entities in the field of space towards the common goal of fostering the well-being of humankind.

Prior to today’s signing, the UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Space Programme has already co-funded with the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre in the UAE (MBRSC) a project between Deimos Space UK and MBRSC to develop mapping applications that use DubaiSat-2 and Deimos-2 high-resolution satellite data.