The UAE Space Agency has sent a high level delegation to UNISPACE +50, a symposium and special high-level meeting of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS), currently being held in Vienna from 18-22 June 2018. The event is a highlight of the space industry calendar and brings together representatives of the international space sector to discuss a wide variety of related topics. This year, a key point of discussion will be the role that space plays in the realisation of the UN 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and will adopt the recommendations of the Dubai Declaration as part of this agenda.
The delegation is headed by Dr Ahmad Abdullah Humaid Bel Houl Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills and Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, and Dr Mohammad Al Ahbabi, Director-General of the UAE Space Agency, along with the agency’s senior management team.
Along with several speaking engagements, the UAE Space Agency will also exhibit at the UAE Pavilion and will showcase its capabilities and current projects and the investments made in the space sector. It will also highlight how the Agency is engaged in capacity building within the country.
Previous to the UNISPACE +50 event, three events have been held – two in the UAE – which focused on space as a driver for socioeconomic development. The culmination of these events was the Dubai Declaration which comprises 20 principles and focuses on the development of the space economy, space society, space accessibility and space diplomacy. The declaration was adopted in November 2016, during a high-level forum in Dubai.
During a short period of time, the UAE has demonstrated a huge commitment to space and has earned a position in the global space sector. Dr Al Ahbabi noted that the Dubai Declaration is a representation of the tangible results and recommendations from the various forums and that will be key to reaching the objectives of the UN’s 2030 Agenda.
“This commitment to working with international partners and space sector organisations to contribute towards the sustainable development goals has also driven our participation in UNISPACE +50 itself,” said Dr. Al Ahbabi. “Throughout our time in Vienna, we will seek to emphasise the UAE’s role in contributing towards the 2030 Agenda. We also hope to discuss the integration of the range of capacities presented by member countries.”