From 16 to 20 May 2022 the OSL Team from Sapienza University and from the Kenya Space Agency participated in the Global Conference on Space for Emerging Countries – GLEC 2022, organised in Quito, Ecuador, by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and the Sideralis Foundation. The Team organized and contributed to the Masterclass on Space Law and Policy and the Plenary on Space Law and Policy.
GLEC 2022 has been the time to bring the international community together to discuss a variety of topics related to the promotion and creation of a local space industry that is innovative, responsive, robust, commercially viable, connected and integrated to the global space industry; the benefits of space applications for the socio-economic development of emerging countries and for advancing national and regional space programmes; the essential legislative and policy elements that must be considered in establishing a firm foundation for national or regional space programmes.
Organisers felt the importance of bringing together representatives of Governments, industry and society, i.e., the three components of any space ecosystem. The Co-Chairs of the International Programme Committee (IPC), composed of seventy-four Members, Valanathan Munsami and Juan Jaramillo Rojas, considered that “a more pragmatic approach [to developing space activities] is to ensure a national or regional ecosystem approach, where indigenous capabilities are ensured to optimally meet local user requirements. This approach brings to the fore the convergence of government intentions and aspirations for a national or regional space programme, industry capabilities and resilience to ensure the long-term sustainability of the sector, and societal awareness and understanding of the benefits of space.”
The IAF General Counsel, Sergio Marchisio, was entrusted as the Master of Ceremony of the Masterclass on Space Law and Policy, along with Plenary on Space Law and Policy.
The Masterclass spurred conversation among high-level Panelists on space law, legislation and policies that emerging countries could consider to support the growth of their space industry. Several issues have been tackled during the Masterclass, especially how to better create awareness on the need for national and regional space legislation to ensure that space activities are conducted in accordance with international law; how space policy and legislation could drive space economy and foster innovation; the governance of space activities in emerging countries, notably in Latin America and Africa; as well as financing aspects and legal options for emerging space countries.
The Plenary session provided an opportunity to deepen the themes examined during the Masterclass, in particular to understand the “new space”, the importance of the participation of the private sector in the space industry, the need for appropriate policy and law to develop an adequate and enabling legal environment; the key policy drivers for the development of a space ecosystem and the development of national space programmes; the relevance of the United Nations space treaties and Conventions and States’ compliance with international obligations for establishing space ecosystems. The nature of the space industry and the rapid advancement of space activities illustrate the need for emerging space countries to consider establishing policies and pieces of legislation to support the development of their national space programmes.
Read the results of the event in the Report below.