There are several space research organizations that are engaged in activities related to outer space and space exploration in Africa and according to the Business and Market Analysis of the African Space Industry done by Space in Africa, over $3 billion have been spent on space projects in Africa since the launch of NILESAT 101 by Egypt in 1998. We have created a list of African countries with Space Agencies – While some countries have established space agencies backed up by national laws, some countries have research centres that coordinate space activities in the country.
Algeria Space Agency – Algeria
The Algerian Space Agency الوكالة الفضائية الجزائرية, (ASAL) was established on January 16, 2002, in Bouzareah, Algiers. It is in charge of the Algerian Space Program. ASAL has flown six different satellites.
The GGPEN (National Space Program Management Office) is an institution that has the oversight of the Interministerial Commission for the General Coordination of the National Space Program and under the Ministry of Communications and Information Technologies, in order to manage and monitor the development of the National Space Program which has as a project the Angosat. GGPEN is expecting Angosat-2 by 2020.
The Botswana International University of Science, Technology (BIUST) – Botswana
Botswana President made a declaration in December 2020 to launch an ambitious satellite project which will see Bostwana developing its own space programme The programme aims to launch an Earth observation 3U nanosatellite into space by 2024 with the ambition of launching bigger satellites such as 6U and 12U in the future in order to create a constellation. This programme will domicile in the Botswana International University of Science, Technology (BIUST) in collaboration with local, regional and international partners.
Djibouti Ministry of Higher Education and Research – Djibouti
Djiboutian government through its Ministry of Higher Education and Research aims to leverage space technologies to understand and monitor its environment, especially regarding the impact of climate change on access to water resources.
Egypt Space Agency – Egypt
In January 2018, President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi passed Law No. 3 of 2018 establishing the Egyptian Space Agency, after the House of Representatives approved the law with the aim to develop and transfer space science and technology into Egypt to build satellites and launch them from Egyptian territories.
The main objectives of the establishment of the Ethiopian Space Science and Geospatial Institute (ESSGI) are to enable the country to fully exploit multi-dimensional uses of space science and technologies; to produce demand-based knowledgeable, skilled and attitudinally matured professionals in the field of aerospace science that enable the country to become internationally competitive in the sector; to develop and strengthen space science and technology infrastructures to speed up space science and technology development in the country, and enable the country to be a robust contributor for the development of aerospace science and technology.
AGEOS is a public institution of scientific, technological and environmental nature. The Agency’s mission is to contribute to the collection, analysis and provision of data from the spatial observation of the national territory for the sustainable management of the environment, natural resources, land use, and spatial planning. AGEOS is the Gabonese Space Agency and controls all space activities and remote sensing in the country.
There were speculations that the Ghana Space Science and Technology Institute will become the Ghana Space Agency in January 2016. The agency was intended to lead the nation’s civilian space exploration efforts, in accordance with the National Science, Technology and Innovation Policy and Development Plan for 2011-2015.
However, up until now, the Ghana Space Science and Technology Centre (GSSTC) is still coordinating space activities in Ghana.
Geographic and Digital Information Centre – Ivory Coast
The CIGN (Geographic and Digital Information Centre), which is part of the Bureau National d’Études Techniques et de Developpement (BNETD), manages the creation of the land mapping database and reinforces human capital skills in GIS in Ivory Coast.
Kenya Space Agency – Kenya
The Kenya Space Agency was established in 2017 to promote, coordinate and regulate space-related activities in the country. This will be achieved through the promotion of research and innovations in space science, technology and respective applications as well as enhancing the regulatory framework.
The Libyan Center for Remote Sensing and Space Science also known as LCRSSS, established in 1989, is a governmental research organization dedicated to research in remote sensing, space, and earthquake sciences, currently with more than 5 research stations. Headquartered in Tripoli, LCRSSS has a staff of close to 300 and is currently coordinating space activities in Libya.
Mauritius Research and Innovation Council – Mauritius
The Mauritius Research and Innovation Council (MRIC), operates under the aegis of the Ministry of Technology Communication and Innovation and is mandated by the Government of Mauritius to promote Science Research, Technology and Innovation in the Republic of Mauritius. MRIC is currently embarking on a new initiative geared towards exploring the potential of space/satellite technology for the socio-economic benefit of Mauritius.
CRTS is the National Institution responsible for the use, promotion and development of remote sensing space in Morocco. It is responsible for coordinating and managing national remote sensing space programs in partnership with ministries, universities and private operators. It is responsible for all space activities in the country.
The Space Science Council, National Commission on Research Science and Technology (NCRST) – Namibia
Through the Ministry of Higher Education, Technology and Innovation, the Namibian government has set out plans to capitalise on remote sensing and geospatial technologies to address socioeconomic problems while targeting disaster management, urban planning, protection of economic territory, education, weather monitoring, agriculture, environmental monitoring.
NASRDA was established with the primary objective of establishing a “fundamental policy for the development of space science and technology” with an initial budget of $93 million. In May 2006, the new extended national space program was adopted.
NASRDA is responsible for all space activities in Nigeria. In 2006, Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT) spinoff from NASRDA to manage and exploit the commercial viability of the Nigerian Communication Satellite for the social and economic benefit of the nation.
Up until then, National Authority for Remote Sensing & Space Sciences (NARSS) established in 1991 as a general authority for Remote Sensing has been in charge of the Egypt Space Program.
Rwanda Space Agency – Rwanda
(RSA) was established in 2020 with the mission of developing Rwanda’s space sector towards social-economic development.
The mandate of RSA is to regulate and coordinate all space activities in the country while also creating an environment that encourages entrepreneurial and industrial development in order to enable the creation of commercialization products that are globally competitive for local consumption and export markets.
South African Space Agency – South Africa
The South African National Space Agency (SANSA) was established in 2010. Following a period of rapid growth and transition, the agency has made significant advancements toward addressing its mandate of deriving greater value from space science and technology for the benefit of South African society. SANSA is responsible for all space activities in South Africa.
Remote Sensing Authority (RSA) was established in 1977, as a National Remote sensing Center (NRSC) within the National Council for Research, Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. In 1996 the Remote Sensing Center was renamed Remote Sensing Authority and affiliated with the National Center for Research, Ministry of Science and Technology. While Sudan is anticipating a Space Agency, NRSC is responsible for space activities in the country.
Tunisia Space Agency – Tunisia
While there is a movement for the official establishment of the Tunisian Space Agency, the National Mapping and Remote Sensing Center established under the Ministry of National Defence (CNCT) act of 1988 is in charge of space activities in the country.
The Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation – Uganda
The Uganda government through its Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation plan to enhance space science development in the country to help in other special areas like agriculture, frontier border security monitoring, and human resource development.
Launched on July 10, 2018, by the President of Zimbabwe, the Agency is responsible for all Space Activities in Zimbabwe.
Last Updated 25 July 2022