L-R: Colonel Luis Felipe Sáez, Chilean Air Force; Franz Fayot, Luxembourg's Economy Minister; Humbulani Mudau, South Africa's Department of Science & Innovation; Dr. Kai-Uwe Schrogl, IISL President; Simonetta Di Pippo, UNOOSA Director; Credit: SIP / Emmanuel Claude

During the second day of the economic mission led by Luxembourg's Minister of the Economy to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and dedicated to the space sector, Franz Fayot visited the Luxembourg pavilion at the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Dubai.

The IAC is the main annual meeting for players in the global space ecosystem; Luxembourg is present there for the third year with a national pavilion.

Luxembourg's presence at the IAC was organised by the Ministry of the Economy with the support of the Luxembourg Space Agency (LSA). Luxembourg exhibitors are presenting their activities to an international audience. The companies and institutions present this year are GomSpace Luxembourg, Ispace Europe, the ERIN Department of the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST), Maana Electric, OffWorld Europe, Redwire Europe, SES and Spire Global Luxembourg.

The Economy Minister also visited the Thales Alenia Space stand at the IAC and met Hervé Derrey, the CEO of the company, who has just announced the opening of a digital centre of excellence in Luxembourg focused on development highly innovative digital solutions in the field of telecommunications and space observation.

Minister Franz Fayot then participated in a panel discussion organised at the initiative of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) within the framework of the IAC, about the “Space Law for New Space Actors: Fostering Responsible National Space Activities” initiative, of which Luxembourg is one of the main donors. Launched in 2019, this UN project aims to support emerging countries in defining their legislation and / or their national space policy so that it is sustainable and responsible, in accordance with the international normative framework on space.

During a press conference at the IAC, in the presence of Minister Franz Fayot, the venture capital fund “Orbital Ventures” was presented; the Luxembourg government has invested in this fund, through the intermediary of the Ministry of the Economy and the National Credit and Investment Society (SNCI).

The first day dedicated to the IAC concluded with an interview with the Emirati Minister of State for Advanced Technology and President of the UAE Space Agency, Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri. Discussions focused on cooperation between the space agencies of the UAE and the Grand Duchy, which, according to Luxembourg's Economy Ministry, have similar priorities.