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”Government expenditures for space facing short-term decline”

France: According to Euroconsult”s newly released research report, Government Space Markets, World Prospects to 2022, government spending on space reached a peak in 2012 of $72.9 billion, a non-negligible increase compared to 2011 which followed two consecutive years of minimal growth. This upswing is attributed to increased activity of countries such as Russia, China, India and new world or regional leaders who compensated for budget uncertainties affecting North America and Europe. Euroconsult expects global government expenditures on space to decrease due to fiscal policies exerting continuous pressure on public finances; improvement is not expected before 2015.

“As forecasted in the previous editions of this research report, global government spending in space has entered a deceleration phase,” said Steve Bochinger, COO at Euroconsult. “2013 should mark for the first time in 12 years a global decrease in government funding for space programs.”

According to the research report, government space programmes should be affected in the short term by an overall flat spending environment and decrease in global funding. The situation is expected to recover in the second part of the decade, driven by a cleaner public finance environment, a new procurement cycle and R&D in historical leading space nations, and sustained spending from new world/regional leaders and nascent programs. By 2022 global government funding for space activities are anticipated to pass the $77 billion mark.

The landscape for civil space activities has experienced profound structural changes in the last decade. In 2003, the top three civil space programs (US, Europe, Japan) accounted for 90% of world’s civil expenditures. In 2012, their share accounted for only 64% illustrating the “decentralization” of space investment worldwide.

Following a peak launch of 65 satellites in 2011, governments worldwide sustained a dynamic launch rate in 2012 with 58 satellites for civil and defense applications, marking the second highest launch rate over the last decade. Between 2003 and 2012, governments launched 514 satellites. A total of 744 satellites are planned to launch over the next decade.

Government spending on space follows a logic of R&D and procurement in a variety of applications domains, each driven by national priorities according to strategic, economic and technical interests. Global trends in 2012 included:

-Manned spaceflight represented 17% of the global spending at $10.6 billion
-Earth observation reached over $10 billion (+7.5%)
-Satcom grew by 5%, representing 14% of the global budget ($8.8 billion)
-Launchers spending totaled $7.5 billion, (+24%)
-Space science and exploration increased by 6% to reach $5.8 billion
-Satellite navigation increased 18% at $4.3 billion
-Space security dropped to $1.9 billion (-43%)

Source: Euroconsult