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Promoting the Space Science and Technology Education And Training in Asia-Pacific Region
Statement by Mr. FU Zhigang, Representative of China, at the Open Informal Session of the United Nations Inter-Agency Meeting on Outer Space Activities (Geneva, January 23, 2004)
2004/04/19
I. History

In order to promote the space technology and application cooperation in Asia and Pacific region, and utilize the space technology to serve the sustainable economic and social development, China National Space Administration (CNSA) organized the first Short Term Training Course of Satellite Technology for Asia Pacific Multilateral Cooperation in Space Technology and Applications (AP-MCSTA) from July to August 2000.

There were 22 government officials and experts in management and engineering for space related fields from Bangladesh, Iran, Indonesia, Cambodia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Mongolia, Pakistan, Philippines and Thailand came to China for this course. The course was cosponsored by Harbin Institute of Technologies (HIT), Northwest Polytechnic University (NPU), and Beihang University (BUAA). Experts and professors from CASC, Chinese Academy of Sciences, HIT, NPU and BUAA, including 4 academicians gave lectures to the trainees.

The lectures included satellite mission analysis, satellite design theory, subsystem technology and R&D cases. Besides, trainees visited some space research institutes and facilities of China, offering them the opportunity to understand comprehensively space technology and its applications. The trainees gained more satellite technology theory, obtained practical satellite design and R&D experience and strengthened exchanges among the space experts of developing countries in Asia-Pacific region. This course is of great significance to the promotion of regional multilateral cooperation, especially substantial project cooperation.

The UN/OOSA and UN/ESCAP provided great supports to this course, and provided financial aids to some of the trainees. CNSA attached great importance to the course. Mr. Luan Enjie, Administrator of CNSA, attended the closing ceremony and delivered a speech. Mrs. Mazlan Othman, Director of UN/OOSA and Mr. Wu Guoxiang, Division Director of Space Technology Application Section of UNESCAP visited China and presented the closing ceremony.

II. Jointly Organize Training of Space Technology and Applications with Secretariat of AP-MCSTA

The 6th Asia-Pacific Conference on Multilateral Cooperation in Space Technology and Applications was held in Beijing in September 2001. Representatives proposed to establish the Secretariat of AP-MCSTA in Beijing and prepare for the establishment of Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO), promote project cooperation and space technology application education and training. Participants also recommended to implement the Recommendations of the UNISPACE III and to maintain regional sustainable economic and social development by promoting applications of space technology. Expertise of some countries in the region should be used to strengthen the education and training to managers of space agencies, experts of R&D department, and professionals of application section in developing countries to boost up the space capabilities of the countries, to reduce the loss caused by duplication of construction and lacking of experience, and to enable space technology and applications to serve economic construction and to benefit countries of this region. With the international cooperation and resources sharing, countries will get benefit in the areas of remote sensing applications, disaster mitigation, environment protection, communications and navigation.

Therefore, CNSA and Secretariat of AP-MCSTA jointly organized successfully the two Training Courses of Space Technology and Remote Sensing Applications in 2002 and 2003. The 4-week training courses focused on applications of remote sensing satellites in environment monitoring and disaster management, basic satellite technology and design cases, optical and microwave remote sensing principles and remote sensor design, remote sensing data processing, images receiving system and application system. The cases of applications in resources management, disaster prevention and mitigation, environment monitoring, meteorology and oceanography were also introduced in the courses. The features of disaster in the region and the status and future of space technology in environment protection and disaster mitigation were briefed in the courses. Trainees visited some space R&D institutes and remote sensing application facilities in China for more comprehensive understandings to space technology and its applications.

Over 50 government officials and engineers engaged in space science, technology and applications in each class came from more than 20 Asia-Pacific countries including Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Fiji, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, U.A.E., Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. The trainees learned more remote sensing satellite and its application theory, obtained practical experience, strengthened mutual understanding and exchanges, and discussed potential projects cooperation within the region. The course laid a solid foundation to the promotion of domestic space technology applications and regional cooperation.

CNSA provided scholarships to most of the trainees. The training courses got great supports from UN/OOSA and UN/ESCAP. The UN/OOSA offered financial aids to 8 trainees from developing countries, and the UN/ESCAP supplied international round-trip tickets for 16 applicants from developing countries. Meanwhile, high-level officials of UN/OOSA and UN/ESCAP visited China and participated some activities of the course.

III. Future Plan

The Chinese government persistently participated UN's activities involving space technology and its applications, and supports to consolidate the function of the UNCOPOUS and other institutions of the United Nations. China supports and has participated in the UN space applications programs.

As one of the founders of AP-MCSTA initiatives, China attaches importance to the Asia-Pacific regional space cooperation and promotes the establishment of the APSCO and the regional space cooperation. As the host country of the future APSCO, China is actively making preparation for a Asia-Pacific Space Science and Technology Education Center, as a supporting institutions of APSCO and wishes to further cooperation with UN in setting up the United Nation Asia-Pacific Space Science and Technology Education Center in Beijing.

China has dozens of world well-known space engineering universities, institutes where hundreds of thousands of space professionals received their education. China also has many experienced experts and professors. China successfully made its first manned space flight in October 2003, which showed China's capability in space technology and personnel training. China is willing to, using its advantages in space technology and education, to train more professionals in space technology and applications for Asia-Pacific countries and promote the development of space technology and its applications in all countries in Asia-Pacific region.

CNSA is appreciated the supports from UN/OOSA and UN/ESCAP to the training courses. With the strong support of UN, CNSA will continue to organize training courses of space science, space technology and applications and space management. At the same time, the Chinese government will further support the activities of UN/OOSA and UN/ESCAP in space technology applications, education and training. 
 
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