The international space context has rapidly changed over a few years and Europe is now faced with a new environment to which it has to adapt. This publication offers an in-depth investigation of the international risks and challenges that could impact the fulfilment of the objectives set forth in the European space strategy, in particular in the 2016 “Joint EU/ESA Statement on the shared vision and goals for Europe in space”. The report hence addresses the role that space diplomacy can play to cope with these challenges and better promote Europe’s positions and strategic interests in the international arena.
To reach this objective, the research examines the current European strategic framework for space and assesses major trends and transformations in the global space sector that could affect European objectives, especially those aiming to foster European industry’s competitiveness and to preserve a safe and secure access to space.
The report also includes numerous statistics and indicators on the global space activity, industry output and government expenditures of major actors, as well as a targeted investigation of selected trends and practices (growth in captive markets, European supply chain security, use of economic diplomacy…). Therefore, it offers a comprehensive assessment of exogenous forces shaping the European approach to space at a time where European priorities for the upcoming years are discussed at the highest European level. Eventually, this is the place of Europe as a competitor on commercial markets, as a partner in international endeavours and as an actor in outer space that is at stake.