As a member of the European Space Agency (ESA), Estonian business delegation led by Foreign Trade and IT Minister Kaimar Karu, visited the ESA last week to introduce the Estonian space program and strengthen partnerships between the ESA and Estonia.
Estonian companies in space industry
Estonia has been a full member of the European Space Agency (ESA) since 2015. Minister Karu sees this membership as a unique opportunity for Estonian research institutions and companies to participate in the development of high technology – not only to use technology and services, but also to develop and export them.
ESA highly values Estonia’s achievements in the areas of cyber security, practical use of artificial intelligence, big data and e-government. And these are the areas where the ESA sees great potential for Estonian businesses.
“Many Estonian companies are already valued players in the space technology sector, which will also help strengthen Estonia’s international position [in space technology],” said Karu. For Example, Estonian remote monitoring firm Kappazeta is already planning its third contract with ESA, and Estonian company Cybernetica is negotiating its first ESA contract.
Madis Võõras, Head of the Enterprise Estonia Space Agency, said that there are more and more companies in Estonia that have benefited from cooperation with ESA.
Estonian companies have a strong interest in space cooperation, as evidenced by the fact that the business delegation accompanying the Minister on the visit to the Netherlands included nine representatives of space companies: Testonica Lab, Skeleton Technologies, Power Up Technologies, Guardtime, Golbriak Space, Milrem Robotics, Tartu Science Park, ESA BIC Estonia and Invent Baltics.
Estonian space program focuses on cyber security, machine learning and innovation
At the meeting with Jan Wörner, Director General of ESA, Minister Karu introduced the Estonian Space Policy Program and Action Plan for 2020-2027. The program is based on the impact analysis carried out by the Estonian ESA, mapping the space technology capabilities of companies and research institutions. This program is mainly focused on developing cyber security, machine learning practical applications and innovation.
“The goal of the action plan is to create the best possible environment for the development of high-technology-based entrepreneurship in Estonia, as a result of which the export of products and services will increase and Estonian R&D will develop,” Karu explained.
Estonia has a long history of developing and shaping the space science as we know it today. Estonia is offering combination ofskills, experience and environment that make it the excellent location for the space industry.
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