The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the Kenya Space Agency have agreed to collaborate under the “Space Law for New Space Actors” project. The collaboration will include a technical advisory mission to Nairobi, Kenya, in the first half of 2023, to provide capacity-building and legal advisory services tailored to regulatory authorities in Kenya. This activity is made possible by the generous contribution of the Government of France, a donor to the Space Law for New Space Actors project.
The mission will assess Kenya’s needs in the area of international space law, taking into account the specific judicial, administrative, and technical requirements of the country. The primary objectives of the project are to establish a cross-government focal point network to organize international expertise and provide peer-to-peer networking opportunities, in-person training, and joint promotion of the project as it is implemented.
The Space Law for New Space Actors project offers UN Member States ad-hoc capacity-building to draft national space legislation and/or national space policies in line with international space law and the normative framework to achieve the long-term sustainability of outer space activities. Further, the project raises awareness of and promotes adherence to the existing normative framework governing outer space activities, in particular, the five international space law treaties developed and concluded under the United Nations, namely the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS).
The Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies (Outer Space Treaty), which celebrates its 55th Anniversary this year, serves as the foundation of international space law. Since the Outer Space Treaty, UN Member States have agreed and adopted a growing list of treaties, principles, and guidelines that, collectively, constitute the normative framework defining responsible activities in outer space. This framework has been instrumental in delivering the safe and sustainable space environment that has enabled over half a century of exponential growth in space activities and the global space economy.
Acting Director of UNOOSA, Niklas Hedman, said: “Building on the great support and cooperation that Kenya has been providing to UNOOSA activities for many years, we are looking forward to the opportunity to deliver capacity-building and advisory services to the country. We are confident that this activity will result in greater acceptance, adherence to, and implementation of the United Nations Treaties on Outer Space, as well as possible new space legislation, policy or strategies in Kenya. Finally, I would like to thank the Government of France for providing the funding for this opportunity.”
Kenya Space Agency Ag Director General Brigadier Hillary B. Kipkosgey, said: “UNOOSA has been a beneficial partner to Kenya through its Access to Space for All initiatives. Space is a novel area and emerging space fairing countries like Kenya are still building their human and technical capacity in space science and technologies. Therefore, Kenya appreciates the support and goodwill of France as a donor country to facilitate experts from UNOOSA to offer technical expertise and guidance as we seek to create an enabling policy and legal and regulatory framework for space activities in Kenya. We look forward to future collaborations and partnerships.”
Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations and International Organisations in Vienna, Delphine Hournau-Pouëzat, said: “France is committed to the principle of free access to space and supports the efforts made by UNOOSA in building capacities in the space sector for emerging space-faring countries. The Space Law for New Space Actors project participates in allowing all nations to enjoy the socio-economic benefits that space infrastructure offers. This programme is instrumental to develop a common understanding and sharing of experiences on how to implement the Space Treaty and to ensure the sustainability of space activities. France is pleased to collaborate with UNOOSA and Kenya, a country dynamically advancing its space sector and contributing to space development in Africa.”
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Nations Information Service Vienna (UNIS).