62nd Session of the Committee on the

Peaceful Uses of Outer Space

12 June 2019

Vienna, Austria


Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

On behalf of the Office for Outer Space Affairs, I welcome the opportunity to address this session on the work of the Office.
At the outset, I wish to extend my gratitude to the outgoing Madame Chair, Rosa Maria Ramirez de Arellano y Haro, for all her efforts, especially during UNISPACE+50. I also sincerely congratulate you, Mr. Chair, for taking on the role and I assure you and the Bureau of the Secretariat's commitment to assist you in running the meetings.

I also wish to join you in warmly welcoming the five newest State members of the Committee (Cyprus, Ethiopia, Finland, Mauritius and Paraguay) as well as the newest observers of the Committee (the European Union, CANEUS, the International Organization for Standardization and For All Moonkind). With a current membership of 92 States, including major space-faring and emerging space nations, and with 11 international inter-governmental organizations and 30 international non-governmental organizations as permanent observers, there is no denying that COPUOS is a strong and inclusive multilateral body.

This year we have received applications for Committee membership from Rwanda and Singapore, as well as an application for observer status from the Moon Village Association. I take this opportunity to reiterate how encouraging it is to witness the continued interest being shown in joining the work of the Committee. This is a testament to the increasing recognition of the role space plays in the daily lives of people around the world. It also speaks to the increasing awareness of, and interest in, the work of COPUOS and of the Office.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

Space activities and exploration trigger our collective imagination. They frequently motivate young people to undertake education, and develop careers, in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (the STEM disciplines) and often have spin off benefits that aren't easily quantifiable.

We just celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the US Apollo 11 mission and the first humans on the surface of the moon. This milestone marked a new phase in space exploration and has inspired humanity in ways that extend beyond space activities. As we remember this achievement and celebrate, the international community is also looking forward with inspiring current and future missions through low-Earth orbit, to the Moon, Mars and beyond.

International cooperation is at the heart of such exciting and important missions, and I therefore find it timely that this Committee will consider for the first time at this session the new agenda item "space exploration and innovation". I look forward to doing all we can to advance cooperation in this area, both as Secretariat to the Committee and more generally as the United Nations office responsible for outer space affairs.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

Remaining with the theme of innovation, let me direct your attention to the Office's approach to capacity-building, which is holistic, modern and strategic. With the goal of making space activities as inclusive as possible, and ensuring that the benefits of space are made available to everyone, everywhere, the Office has been focusing recent efforts on our Access to Space For All Initiative. The Access to Space For All Initiative exemplifies innovative triangular cooperation between established space actors, the United Nations and entities from non-spacefaring or emerging countries.

As an example, our successful collaboration with the Japanese Exploration and Aerospace Agency continues to grow. The United Nations/Japan Cooperation Programme on CubeSat Deployment from the International Space Station Japanese Experiment Module, commonly known as the "KiboCUBE" programme, recently announced its fourth-round selections. I extend my sincere congratulations to the winners- a most worthy team from the Technical University of Moldova. The fifth selection round is now open until 30 September, with all the details on the opportunity available on the UNOOSA website.

Also, later today the Office will announce, together with the China Manned Space Agency, the results of the final selection for flying experiments onboard the China Space Station. This is another innovative and future-focused initiative aimed at opening up space exploration activities to all nations.

These are but a few highlights of the Office's expanding portfolio of partnerships with private and public sector entities.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

In a further instance of unique collaboration, the winners of the Space For Youth Competition, organized by UNOOSA in collaboration with the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC), will also be announced during this session of the Committee, during a side event on Thursday, 20 June. The Space For Youth Competition is in line with the Secretary-General's United Nations-wide 'Youth 2030' strategy. The Competition asked youth to share their ideas on how to leverage space to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. I encourage delegations to look for a dedicated conference room paper at this session presenting the winning proposals. The winners will be joining the International Astronautical Federation Workshop, organized with the support of the United Nations, in Washington, DC in October this year.

Late last month, the Office and the European Space Agency (ESA) also signed a Joint Statement on the Challenge of Space Debris, as well as a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on cooperation for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. In line with these joint efforts, allow me to announce that ESA and UNOOSA are organizing a panel on space debris, to be held on Thursday, 20 June.

Moreover, let me also highlight that the Space Law for New Space Actors: Fostering Responsible National Space Activities project of the Office has attracted positive responses from States. UNOOSA looks forward to further developing this new project with all interested stakeholders.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

Before I move on from the topic of innovative partnerships, I wish to direct your attention to the successful collaboration established with the Space Mission Planning Advisory Group (SMPAG) and the International Asteroid Warning Network (IAWN). A new school, planned from 20 to 24 April 2020 in Erice, Italy, will focus on the near-Earth objects agenda. The aim of the school is to cover, in an interdisciplinary manner, the threat an asteroid could potentially pose to humanity and our plant. In this area, I would likewise inform you that the Office will host in Vienna the 2021 Planetary Defence Conference from 26 to 30 April 2021, with the aim to further raise awareness among decision-makers about near-Earth objects and their potential risk to Earth. There will as well be a stronger emphasis on disaster preparedness, introducing a potential threat of NEOs to the disaster management community and leveraging existing global coordination mechanisms on disaster preparedness with which UNOOSA/UN-SPIDER work.

The International Committee on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (ICG) also continues to promote voluntary cooperation on matters of mutual interest related to civil satellite-based positioning, navigation, timing, and value-added services. Information on ICG's upcoming activities is available in the annex to this statement.

Likewise connected with GNSS, I wish to remind delegations that later this month, from 24 to 28 June, a workshop on the Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, organized by the University of the South Pacific (USP) and sponsored by the Office, will take place in Fiji.

I will also highlight for you a recent joint event, co-organized by UNOOSA and the Department for Economic and Social Development (DESA), held at the Fourth Annual Multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the SDGs last month in New York. This event focused on "Space for SDGs", ensuring the benefits of space reach the widest possible population, and how the United Nations system may pool its efforts and promote an inclusive international system prepared to keep abreast with the key technological developments of our time.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

The Office continues to expand and update its online presence. You will now find on our website dedicated webpages illustrating how space can be used in support of the Sustainable Development Goals, providing information on space agencies around the world, as well as displaying a newly launched Space4SDGs logo. We are encouraged to see increasing contributions to the Space4Water Portal and efforts continue on the Space4Women Project, including the development of a Space4Women Portal. Additional information on the Space for Women project will be shared during the Space for Women/Women in Space side event, co-organized by the Permanent Mission of the United States and UNOOSA, and scheduled to take place next week on Thursday, 20 June at lunchtime.

I also wish to draw your attention to the exhibition taking place in the rotunda of the Vienna International Centre throughout this session of the Committee, the organization of which was assisted by UNOOSA. I encourage everyone to explore the exciting and interactive displays, which feature, amongst other things: the legacy of the Apollo mission and the future of space exploration; the history of Chinese navigation technology over the last 5,000 years; a Vega launcher model; inflatable planets showing a multidisciplinary approach connecting art and science; and an experiential exhibit on space science targeted for people with disabilities.

I am also pleased to announce that the UNOOSA 2018 Annual Report has been published. A presentation on the annual report will be delivered this Friday, 14 June in the afternoon. Hard copies of the report are being made available to all delegations and the online version is also available on the UNOOSA website.

Further I would like to inform the Committee that the Office's programme plan for 2020, prepared and issued as part of the United Nations' programme budget proposal for the same period, is contained in Section A of document A/74/6 (Sect.6). The Committee on Programme and Coordination (CPC), the General Assembly's body for planning, programming and coordination, began its review of all the programme plans of the secretariat earlier this month and the programme on the peaceful uses of outer space is scheduled to be presented tomorrow 13 June, with the review continuing through to the end of June. With a view to the CPC taking into account inputs from the COPUOS, Member States are invited to review Section A of the document and to submit its comments, for onward transmission to the CPC. More information is available in conference room paper A/AC.105/2019/CRP.8 which will be distributed, together with document A/74/6 (Sect.6), later today.

More detailed information on UNOOSA activities, particularly those being conducted in 2019, is provided in the annex to this statement.

Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates,

In closing, I wish to draw your attention to the fact that this year marks the sixtieth anniversary of the adoption of General Assembly Resolution 1472 (XIV), which established the permanent Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. This anniversary offers an exceptional opportunity to look back, take stock and celebrate our collective accomplishments, as we also look forward to the work that this body, the unique platform for international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space, aims to accomplish at this session and in the future.

Rest assured that UNOOSA is committed to maintaining a very high standard of service delivery and providing dedicated support to the Committee.

I wish all delegations a fruitful sixty-second session of the Committee and thank you for your attention.






2018 Activities organized or supported by the Office for Outer Space Affairs

Information for 2018 may be found in the UNOOSA 2018 Annual Report as well as the A/AC.105 reports issued on the activities conducted by the Office in 2018.


2019 Activities organized or supported by the Office for Outer Space Affairs

Programme on Space Applications (PSA)


Location, Dates

UN/Jordan Workshop: Global Partnership in Space Exploration and Innovation

Jordan, 25-28 March

4th GEO Data Providers Workshop: Earth Observations-based Knowledge for International Policy Frameworks (hosted)

Austria, 23-26 April

UN/China Forum on Space Solutions: Realizing the Sustainable Development Goals

China, 24-27 April

UN/Romania Conference on Space Technology for Sustainable Agriculture and Precision Farming

Romania, 6-10 May

International Space Weather Initiative Workshop (ISWI) organized by the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) and sponsored by the Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA)

Italy, 20-24 May

Samara National Research University Summer Space School "Future Space Technologies and Experiments in Space"

Russian Federation, 17-29 June

Workshop on the Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems organized by the University of the South Pacific (USP) and sponsored by the Office for Outer Space Affairs (OOSA)

Fiji, 24-28 June

CEU In-Service ICT Training for Environmental Professionals

Hungary, 22-26 July

UN/Austria Symposium "The Renewed Promise of Space: A Tool for Development, Accessibility and Diplomacy"

Austria, 2-4 September

ASI Training course on remote sensing, space sciences and space policy

Kenya, 7-11 October

UN/IAF 27th Workshop on Space Technology for Socio-Economic Benefits: Ensuring inclusiveness and equality through space-based applications and space exploration

USA, 18-20 October


International Committee on GNSS (ICG)


Location, Dates

Training Course on Global Navigation Satellite Systems

Thailand, 14-18 January

Technical Seminar on Reference Frame in Practice: Reference Frames, Kinematics and Dynamic Datums

Viet Nam, 20-21 April

Workshop on Ionospheric Forecasting for GNSS Operations in Developing Countries: Findings and Challenges

Italy, 27-31 May

2019 Beacon Satellite Symposium

Poland, 19-23 August

14th Meeting of International Committee on GNSS (ICG)

India, 8-13 December


United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER)


Location, Dates

Follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Myanmar, 11-15 March

Training as follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Lao People's Democratic Republic, 18-22 March

Institutional Strengthening Mission: Training on space applications for floods and droughts

Ecuador, 25 - 29 March

Technical Advisory Mission

Peru, 1-5 April

Second International Conference on Multi-Hazard Early Warning Systems (co-organized)

Switzerland, 13-14 May

National consultative meeting and international space training, Republic of Korea (co-organized)

Republic of Korea, 11-12 July

Follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Mongolia, 2-4 September

International Training Programme in Earth Observation for Disaster Risk Reduction

China, 5-10 September

The United Nations Conference on Space-based Technologies for Disaster Risk Reduction - "A Policy Perspective"

China, 11-12 September

Follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Bangladesh, Q3

Follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Tunisia, Q3

UNOOSA/DLR/BMWi International Conference

Germany, 6-8 November

Space based information system for Ecosystem based Disaster Risk Reduction (Eco-DRR) (co-organized)

India, 25-29 November

Training and workshop for Emergency Mapping Procedural Guidelines for South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation countries

India, 3-7 December

Workshop on combatting disaster with space-based and geospatial technologies in Arid Regions

Turkey, 10-12 December

Follow-up activity to Technical Advisory Mission

Ethiopia, Q4

Institutional Strengthening Mission: Training on space applications for floods and droughts

Cameroon, Q4


Capacity-building in space law and policy


Location, Dates

United Nations/ Turkey/ APSCO Conference on Space Law and Policy

Istanbul, Turkey 23-26 September


Inter-agency coordination


Location, Dates

39 th session of the United Nations Inter-Agency Meeting on Outer Space Activities (UN-Space)

UNHQ, New York, Q4

UN-Space Open Session (to be held as part of the World Space Forum)

Vienna International Centre (VIC), November 2019


World Space Forum


Location, Dates

United Nations/Austria World Space Forum on "Access to Space4All"

Vienna International Centre (VIC), 19-22 November





Fellowship Programme for "Drop Tower Experiment Series" (DropTES)


UN/Italy Long-term Fellowship Programme on GNSS


UN/Japan Long-term Fellowship Programme Post-graduate study on Nano-Satellite Technologies (PNST)



Regional Centres for Space Science and Technology Education



Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CSSTEAP)

Dehradun, India

African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in French Language (CRASTE-LF)

Rabat, Morocco

African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in English Language (ARCESSTE-E)

Ile-Ife, Nigeria

Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Latin America (CRECTEALC)

Puebla, Mexico

Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia (RCSSETWA)

Amman, Jordan

Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (RCSSTEAP)

Beijing, China


Awareness-raising and Outreach

United Nations/International Days and Anniversaries


International Day of Women and Girls in Science

11 February

International Women's Day

8 March

World Water Day

22 March

International Day of Human Space Flight

12 April

40 th Anniversary and Open Day of the Vienna International Centre

27 May & 8 September

World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought

17 June

International Asteroid Day

30 June

20 th Anniversary of UNISPACE III

19 July

50 th Anniversary of the Moon Landing

20 July

International Youth Day

12 August

World Space Week

4-10 October

International Day for Disaster Reduction

13 October




Location, Dates

UNOOSA: Bringing the benefits of space to humankind

(at the International Astronautical Congress)

Washington DC, United States of America, 21-25 October 2019





UNOOSA 2018 Annual Report

June 2019

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