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UNITED NATIONS OFFICE FOR OUTER SPACE AFFAIRS
High-level Segment, UN/Germany 2018 High Level Forum
15 November 2018
Excellences, Ladies and Gentlemen, dear participants,
On behalf of the United Nations, it is my honour to join my distinguished colleagues in welcoming you all to the first day of the high-level segment of the 2018 UN/Germany High Level Forum.
Allow me to begin by expressing my appreciation from all of us at the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs, for the close collaboration we experiences from our German co-hosts DLR, our colleagues from ESA for their generous support and all our friends here in Bonn for their warm hospitality.
I would also like to thank our partners at the Secure World Foundation and the International Committee on Global Navigation Satellite Systems for their strong support.
Last but not least, a heartfelt thanks to each and everyone one of you for joining us in Bonn. I am proud to see such a wide range of expertise represented this week, drawn from all corners of the international space community.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The space sector is booming. As representatives of the international space community, you are all playing a part in driving this exciting world forward. As we travel forward together it is important to remember that the very nature of the space environment - perhaps more than any other sector - is entirely reliant on lasting, effective international cooperation.
As access to space continues to broaden, the reliance on such cooperation is only growing. I can assure you that the UN stands ready to play its part in facilitating this process to ensure that the space environment remains a stable place for us to continue investing our political and economic capital.
At the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs we are doing exactly this; working with stakeholders from around the world to foster productive international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. 2018 has been a big year for us, with UNOOSA hosting UNISPACE+50 back in June, an event which saw over 800 participants and 30 space agencies gather in Vienna. Of the many highlights at UNISPACE+50, a key policy outcome was the international community's agreement to establish a Space2030 Agenda. This agreement, endorsed by the UN General Assembly a few weeks ago in New York, will see Member States negotiate, through the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space negotiate, a Space2030 agenda. As defined by the resolution itself, the Space2030 agenda will be the first-ever comprehensive strategy for enhancing the contribution of space to support the global development agendas.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Space2030 agenda will form just one part of a busy year for our community in 2019. Next year we will see the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11, the erstwhile beginnings of private human spaceflight and even more countries entering the space sector for the first time. As space continues to climb up political agendas around the world, UNOOSA is working with an ever-expanding range of partners to drive forward productive international cooperation.
With such increasing activity, the challenge of maintaining a stable space environment is more pressing than ever. We need to work hard to ensure that solutions keep pace with the challenges, to maintain a safe, secure and sustainable space environment. There is much to be done. For example, as a community we should be asking ourselves, are we doing enough to promote space debris mitigation? Are we prepared for a robust international debate on space traffic management? Is the current framework governing the space environment ready for mega-constellations? Are we making enough progress to expand access to space? This is just a snapshot of a long list of priorities that demand a robust set of solutions at the international level.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As we shift our focus to the High Level Segment of the HLF, such questions are not just for the debate this week but as we continue to come together, as a community, to find more ways to strengthen international cooperation in space.
In the context of Space2030, we frame such conversations by looking at space's contributions from an economic, social, access and diplomatic perspectives. These four angles, or 'pillars', will see dedicated high-level panels over the next two days. You can, therefore, look forward to some exciting discussions, sitting at the forefront of the international debate.
I encourage you all to take advantage of your time here in Bonn and join the debate and make your points of view known.
Thank you once again for joining us here today.