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APRSAF-25

Joint Statement

Joint Statement
of
The 25th Session of the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum

November 6-9, 2018, Singapore

The 25th annual session of the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF25) was successfully held in Singapore from November 6 to 9, 2018, with the theme “Innovative Space Technology for Evolving Needs.”

Since its establishment in 1993, APRSAF has been serving as an open forum for those interested in cooperation in the field of space activities in the Asia-Pacific region. The forum has become the platform for space cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region with participation not only of space agencies but also governmental bodies, international organizations, development aid agencies, research institutes, and universities. APRSAF celebrates its 25th anniversary this year and the activities of the various Working Groups (WGs) and initiatives throughout the years have resulted in notable regional cooperation, and have made APRSAF into a sustainable forum.

The participants recognized and shared the following key points during APRSAF-25:

1. Innovative Space Technology for Evolving Needs

Due to advancements in economic and societal system, our needs for seeking a peaceful, secure, and affluent society are also evolving. As a consequence, outer space is also becoming congested through the increase in space activities, resulting to space debris. In order to respond to these new needs and emerging issues, it is important for space agencies to continue to face the challenge of developing innovative future space technology and to make efforts for advancing space technology.

To effectively utilize innovative space technologies for solving societal issues in the Asia-Pacific region, social implementation of high level solutions using big data analytics using earth observation data, while AI and IoT will be the key areas for solutions.

2. Improvement of space technology capability in the Asia-Pacific region

We welcome the progress of the space agencies who have interest in the mission concept of joint development of innovative small and cube satellites, which was recommended in APRSAF-24, for providing new solutions to social issues. We expect the participating agencies to promote and deepen the discussions on the establishment of the necessary framework to realize this joint development of satellites by accumulating high-level technology among space agencies.

We have been sharing the various opportunities of space education programs and capacity building conducted in the countries of Asia-Pacific region. We highly recognize the new efforts
to organize the space science and technology workshops which provide advanced and technical lectures for higher education with the aim of improving the space capability of our region as a whole. We acknowledge the importance of regional cooperation for the continuation and enhancement of such activities to meet the demands of our region.

We highly value human resource development in the Asia-Pacific region through the Kibo-ABC Program and the start of space application research using small satellites, and expect further progress of space development and applications in each country of our region through the utilization of ISS/Kibo.

3. Cooperation with user organizations toward social implementation

We recognize the importance to further enhance APRSAF initiatives such as Sentinel Asia and SAFE and to further strengthen the cooperation with user organizations, development aid agencies, and international organizations for solving societal issues such as natural disaster, climate change, food security, water resource management and urban issues, which are listed in the Sendai Framework, Paris Agreement as well as SDG’s of the United Nations.

We welcome the advancement of SAFE activities into a new framework based on the cooperative relationships between and among participating space agencies, as well as, regional and international organizations such as the ASEAN. We expect to promote the new SAFE projects such as crop forecast and harvest by using space technology.

We acknowledge that Sentinel Asia has established a long-term strategic plan and is being jointly implemented by participating members. This will effectively support the disaster management activities of the participating members and lead to making Sentinel Asia a societal infrastructure.

We welcome the newly arriving satellite positioning system, Michibiki, which covers the Asia-Pacific region. We acknowledge the contribution of satellite positioning systems such as Michibiki, for applications in the fields of land development, agriculture and transportation management, and expect further promotion to other applications.

4. Creation of space policy community in the Asia-Pacific region.

We acknowledge that each country is promoting its own space policies for industrial development at different stages and with diverse approaches. We expect to promote the participation of the new players into the space industry through development of space policies for promoting the launch of enterprise and programs such as space business idea contest, including “S-Booster in Asia”, and strengthening partnership with the organizations which support launching enterprises.

We welcome the progress in organizing periodic gatherings among officials in charge of space policy of the countries in Asia-Pacific region, by taking opportunities such as space policy side event during UN/COPUOS or discussions during ASEAN-SCOSA. We believe that the exchange of views on space policy during such opportunities will not only deepen the mutual understanding
of policy issues in each country, but also lead to create cooperative opportunities for solving the common societal issues together.

5. Promotion of participation in future space exploration activities

As described in the Tokyo Principles adopted at the second International Space Exploration Forum (ISEF2), space exploration brings benefits to humanity on Earth through the development and application of advanced technologies, creation of global partnerships, stimulation of economic expansion and promotion of new business opportunities.

We acknowledge that there are various opportunities of participation in space exploration, including emerging countries and non-space sectors in the Asia-Pacific region. We also recognize that the evolving role of space agencies and the new cooperation arising among existing and emerging players in space exploration. For the expansion of space exploration, we recognize the importance of continuing utilization of the ISS, while satellite development to demonstrate technologies in LEO are to be pursued for lunar exploration and beyond, applying ground technology to space exploration and contribution of space exploration technologies back to terrestrial applications, promoting cooperation between space agencies and new players, and inspiring young generations.

Based on the increasing momentum brought by the ISEF2, we expect to continue our discussion regarding space exploration among various players in the Asia-Pacific region. APRSAF will continue to highlight the importance of international space exploration.

6. Expectation for future APRSAF discussion

The participants welcomed following suggestions;

  • To have dialogue among industries including start-ups and discuss on the role of space agencies for tackling common issues
  • To have a dialogue with young generations and new incubations with innovative ideas
  • To provide more linkage between regional and global efforts including agendas discussed at UNCOPUOS
  • To discuss how satellite data could be shared to achieve regional goal
  • To have a focused discussion on disaster risk reduction (disaster forecast models), climate studies and, space science

APRSAF-26 is scheduled to be held in Japan in 2019.

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