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ESA, EDA sign accord for cooperation

France: European Space Agency (ESA) Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain and European Defence Agency (EDA) Chief Executive Claude-France Arnould signed an administrative arrangement on cooperation. The conclusion of the administrative arrangement follows the invitation sent by the Head of the EDA, Baroness Ashton, to ESA’s Director General to enter negotiations for the establishment of such an arrangement and its approval by the EU Council and the ESA Council in May and June 2011, respectively.
“I am convinced that an increased dialogue and coordination between the space and defence communities is of mutual interest and will allow European space programmes to better support Europe’s security and defence needs,” said Dordain. “Reinforcing the cooperation between EDA and ESA will allow us to further develop the security dimension of the European Space Policy in coordination with other EU stakeholders.”
The aim of the Arrangement is to provide a structured relationship and a mutually beneficial cooperation between ESA and EDA through the coordination of their respective activities.
The cooperation will in particular aim at exploring the added value and contribution of space assets to the development of European capabilities in the area of crisis management and the Common Security and Defence Policy.
“The signature of this arrangement will allow to consolidate our already close and fruitful working relations with the ESA,” said Arnould.
Building on their specific complementary roles and activities, ESA and EDA are already cooperating on a variety of subjects, including Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, Satellite Communi-cation in support of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), and Space Situational Awareness, as well as critical space technologies.
Source: ESA