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South Australia is ready to play a leading role in new national space agency

Monday, 25 September 2017

Premier Jay Weatherill says South Australia is ready to play a leading role in the space
industry, welcoming the Federal Government’s decision to establish a national space agency.

The newly-established South Australian Space Industry Centre (SASIC), Australia’s first
dedicated centre to grow the space economy, will work collaboratively with the Commonwealth
and private sector players to drive industry innovation, research and entrepreneurial
development in SA.

The State Government has nurtured the space industry in South Australia, which already
boasts 60 companies and organisations with expertise in the sector.

South Australia is determined to secure a significant share of the Australian space industry.
The sector generates $420 billion global revenue each year – Australia’s share is $4 billion.
It’s estimated a national space agency could increase Australia’s share to as much as $12-18
billion in just three years.

The Premier has also welcomed the Federal Opposition’s support for a national space agency,
which guarantees the bi-partisan support required for a national agency of this kind.

This week, Adelaide is hosting the International Astronautical Congress (IAC), with 4000
delegates from around the world attending, including Space X founder Elon Musk.

Background

South Australia has long been a national leader in the space industry.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Australia’s first satellite launch from Woomera.

In August, SA and the ACT signed a signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work
together towards the creation of a national space agency. NT has now also joined the push.

Last week, Martin Hamilton-Smith was sworn in as the Minister for Space Industries ahead of
the establishment of SASIC.

SASIC will be located within the existing Defence SA headquarters on Pirie St.

SASIC will build on the work of the existing Space Industry Office at Defence SA to drive
space industry innovation, research and entrepreneurial development.

Quotes attributable to Premier Jay Weatherill

South Australia is ready to take a lead role in the space industry in Australia.

We already have a strong foundation. There are about 60 companies which are part of a
space node here in South Australia and we’ve just established our own South Australian
Space Industry Centre.

Our existing national leadership in defence industries is complementary to the opportunities in
the space industry.

This is an exciting opportunity for South Australia, with the prospect of billions of dollars and
thousands of jobs.

I welcome the Federal Government’s decision to create a national space agency and I look
forward to working together with the Commonwealth to ensure South Australia plays a
significant part.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Defence and Space Industries Martin Hamilton-Smith

The opportunities arising out of the space industry for South Australia are incredibly lucrative.

As an industry, space is growing at more than three times the world annual GDP – there is so
much growth potential here in South Australia. We’ve done the hard yards nurturing South
Australia’s space ecosystem and we’re now well positioned to play a leading role as the
Commonwealth establishes a national space agency.

Our own Space Industry Centre will work closely with the national agency. We’ve already
partnered with the ACT and NT and we also have good working relationships with international
space agencies.

The space sector will provide new jobs and careers. Engineers, data specialists, software
designers, researchers. The fast-moving satellite communications field is so diverse; you can
build a manned satellite that orbits the earth or design a mobile phone app that talks directly to
it.

This is a $420 billion industry and we are only at the beginning.