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Europeans Mull Funding Options For Lagging Galileo, Tiefensee Says

By | June 11, 2007

      European leaders are weighing an overhaul of financing and other matters for the lagging Galileo, a European version of the U.S.-led global positioning system, according to E.U. Transport Council chair Wolfgang Tiefensee.

      The council moved unanimously in adopting the new course.

      “In doing so, we are giving Galileo a new direction on its way to implementation,” Tiefensee said. He added that with Galileo as a pillar of European space policy, council leaders will underscore Europe’s efforts in the fields of space travel, advanced technology and innovation, and ensuring European independence in GPS technology.

      The council invited the European Commission to submit concrete funding proposals and proposals for a new procurement strategy before the final decision – scheduled for sometime in the fall – on continuation of Galileo. Tiefensee said he hopes the new approach will help avoid further delays and limit increases in Galileo demands for public funds.

      Those leading the study of Galileo financing alternatives will examine all public sector funding options, including money that would be contributed by the European Space Agency (ESA), according to Tiefensee.

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