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UK loses Galileo and Egnos but can continue with Copernicus and ESA

Paris, 29 December 2020. – The United Kingdom will no longer participate in the European Galileo or Egnos programs but can continue, in principle, with Copernicus and remain member of the European Space Agency (ESA), the British Government said.

On its official www.gov.uk website, the Government lists the „Brexit transition: new rules for 2021”.

According to the site, the UK will “not use Galileo (including the future Public Regulated Service (PRS)) for defence or critical national infrastructure; have access to the encrypted Galileo Public Regulated Service; be able to play any part in the development of Galileo; be able to play any part in the development of EGNOS; be able to use the EGNOS SoL and EGNOSWorking Agreements (EWAs), which will no longer be recognised by the EU; be able to access or use EDAS”.

Furthermore, from 1 January 2021, “the UK will no longer participate in the EU Space Surveillance and Tracking (EUSST) programme. The UK will however continue to have access to EUSSTservices as a non-EU country”, the Government says.

However, the UK can continue to participate in Copernicus. “The UK welcomes the agreement in principle to continue to participate in the Copernicus component of the EU Space Programme as a third country for 2021-27,” it says. “If the UK confirms in early 2021 to participate in Copernicus, we expect UK-based businesses, academics and researchers will be able to bid for future Copernicus contracts tendered through the EU”.

“Similarly, we expect UK users will also be able to access most of the Copernicus data and services as now.”

“(D) evices that currently use Galileo and EGNOS, such as smart phones, will continue to be able to do so”, the Government says.

Also, “(t)he UK’s membership of the European Space Agency (ESA) is not affected by leaving the EU as it is not an EU organisation.” The UK will thus continue to participate and be able to bid for ESA programs.

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