Chinese Ambassador: Bolivia’s First Satellite Will Launch in March 2013
[Satellite TODAY 01-09-12] China will launch Bolivia’s first telecommunications satellite, Tupac Katari, into orbit in December 2013, Chinese Ambassador to Bolivia Shen Zhiliang announced Jan 5.
The satellite is being built in China under an agreement signed between the Bolivian Space Agency and China Aerospace Science and Technology subsidiary China Great Wall Industry Corp. in December 2010. Bolivian and Chinese engineers are working on the final design, which is scheduled for completion in March 2013.
The project could be completed before next December if there are no technical setbacks, according to Zhiliang. “China will provide technology and guarantee the quality of the satellite. Training will be provided to 74 Bolivian members of the project’s administrative team next March in China,” the ambassador said in a statement.
Bolivia is paying approximately $300 million for the Tupac Katari project. The General Treasury of Bolivia is contributing $45 million to pay the bill. The remaining $250 million is being paid through a loan issued from the Development Bank of China.