African Union Executive Council Approves African Space Agency Structure

African Union Board on Disaster Risk Reduction
The New African Union Commission headquarters building in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Photo Credit: Artyukh Igor via Flickr

The African Union Executive Council has approved the structure of the African Space Agency (AfSA) as the latest of the concrete steps to realize an African Outer Space Program, as one of the flagship programs of the AU Agenda 2063. The African Union Heads of State and Government during their Twenty-Sixth Ordinary Session on 31 January 2016 in Addis Ababa adopted the African Space Policy and Strategy as the first of the concrete steps towards realizing an African Outer Space Programme that was identified as one of the flagship programmes of the AU Agenda 2063 (Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.589 (XXVI)).

Domiciled in Egypt, the structure of AfSA would facilitate the human resources needed for the operationalization of the Agency. The agency is expected to commence operations in 2022 after the appointment of the leadership and workforce of the agency. In addition, the Pan African University of Space Science and Technology being hosted by South Africa has been approved with operationalization expected soon.

Just recently, the AUC completed the baseline studies on the four-space segments and the space socio-economic benefits for the establishment and operationalization of the AfSA. The study aims to facilitate the achievement of one of the key aspirations of the African Space Policy and Strategy and in developing a sustainable and vibrant indigenous space industry that promotes and responds to Africa’s needs.