Luxembourg, 8 October 2020. – The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) is working with the G20 space agencies on recommendations to promote space technology and share space data to increase global resilience, the agency in Vienna said yesterday.
As part of the G20 virtual conference focussing on the global space sector, Space20, UNOOSA was invited by Saudi Arabia to deliver a keynote on how space agencies are supporting the global response to, and recovery from, COVID-19, the agency said. This is the first time that space has been included in the G20 agenda, UNOOSA said. Saudi Arabia currently holds the G20 Presidency.
The presentation concluded with recommendations on how space data and know-how can be shared among nations going forward, to better respond to future crises. In the weeks leading up to the conference, UNOOSA and Saudi Arabia had engaged with G20 space agencies to ensure the keynote reflected their position. The outcome of the October 7 meeting will be a joint statement on behalf of the G20 space agencies and UNOOSA.
The G20 Saudi Secretariat and Saudi Space Commission indicated a strong interest in establishing a governance model for a dedicated Space20 Working Group, UNOOSA said. This group would act as a new hub for space-related discussions under the G20 umbrella. The Saudi G20 Secretariat and Saudi Space Commission indicated a desire for UNOOSA to act as the leading implementer of this Space20 Working Group, the agency added.
UNOOSA Director Simonetta Di Pippo said: “This is a historic development for the G20, recognising the rising importance of space for the quality of our lives on Earth and for the future of humanity. Global leaders, especially those with the most advanced space agencies, have a responsibility to share tools, data and know-how to ensure the benefits of space are maximised and accessible to all. UNOOSA stands ready to support the G20 in driving these aspirations forward.”