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Statement by Mr. BIAN Zhigang, head of the Chinese delegation, at the 48th session of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of COPUOS




First of all, congratulations on your election as chairman of the STSC and wish the session every success under your guidance.

China steadfastly pursues peaceful development, views outer space as the province of humanity, supports activities in the peaceful use of outer space, and actively explores and uses outer space.

In 2010, we in China have made gratifying progress in space technology, applications and science, and carried out extensive and in-depth international cooperation in the space area. Now I'd like to inform the STSC of progress made in China's space activities in 2010.

I. space technology

In 2010, the Long March series launch vehicles carried out 15 launches, launching 20 satellites including the FY-III polar-orbiting meteorological satellite, the Beidou (Compass) series navigation positioning satellite, communications and broadcasting satellite, the SJ series space probe satellite as well as the Chang'E-II lunar exploration satellite.

Of the satellites launched, the Chang'E-II, the first satellite in China's lunar exploration program phase II, was launched from the Xichang satellite launch centre and entered the earth-lunar transfer orbit on 1.10.2010. On 9.10.2010, it commenced lunar orbiting. From 27-29.10.2010, it completed imaging of the pre-selected landing zone for Chang'E-III, laying a good foundation for the latter's launch. To date, it is operating normally on orbit and data reception is good.

The Chinese government emphasizes space debris control and management in its space activities and has implemented a space debris research program, and promoted the application of mitigation technologies in spacecraft design and manufacture. In 2010, China formally promulgated the highest standards in this area entitled Space Debris Mitigation to guide space debris mitigation.

II. space applications

Space technology has played an important role in various fields such as meteorology, remote sensing, environmental protection, and navigation, among others. Major international events like the Expo 2010 in Shanghai, the Guangzhou Asian Games, and Guangzhou Asian Para Games have been well served by space technology and applications.

After on-orbit testing, provisional operation and routine operations, the FY-III satellite has acquired a wealth of earth atmospheric data. In addition to the FY-III A and B satellite, the FY-II D and E satellites are operating on their respective orbits over the equator, carrying out continuous monitoring of weather conditions, particularly typhoon and torrential rain systems in the Asia-Pacific region. So far, the FY series satellites are functioning normally and have yielded notable economic and social benefits.

The Beidou (Compass) navigation system is a global satellite navigation system independently developed and operated by and an important space infrastructure under construction in China, capable of application in various fields of economic and social activity. To date, China has built a space telemetry and control network composed of space and ground segments, fully equipped and multifunctional, able to meet TTC needs of satellites and provide support for human space flight and deep space probe missions.

China has included remote sensing technology in its operational environmental governance system. Through constant research, practice and applications, we have put in place an operational environmental remote sensing technological system, deriving its data mainly from the HJ-I A and B satellites and using space data in an integrated manner. The system is playing an important role in environmental monitoring, law enforcement and emergency response as well as ecological conservation, nuclear safety regulation, among others.

III. space science

In 2010, China made great efforts in space scientific research in a variety of fields such as space weather, astronomy, solar physics, dark matter probe, etc using space scientific satellites, guided by space science objectives and oriented toward scientific knowledge output. China has also deployed some new space scientific installations and devices, for example, the Meridian project already in operation. Furthermore, China has taken an active part in international programs like the International Space Science Cloud Computing Network and the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), and together with UNESCO jointly implemented an international space science and information technology training program for young people to increase their knowledge of and foster their interest in space science.

IV. international cooperation

In 2010, administrator Mr. Chen Qiufa of China National Space Administration(CNSA) met with his counterparts from the Russian Federation, USA, Ukraine, European Space Agency, among others for in-depth friendly discussions on bilateral cooperation on an equal and mutually beneficial basis. CNSA also had fruitful cooperation with international organizations such as OOSA, ESCAP and APSCO.

Last June, the Chinese government formally signed the host country agreement concerning the UN-SPIDER Beijing office and subsequently an agreement between China's civic affairs ministry and OOSA on financing for the office. Last December, the office was formally inaugurated. Leaders of OOSA and CNSA attended the inaugural ceremony. The opening of that office will no doubt contribute to disaster prevention and mitigation in the region. CNSA will continue to support COPUOS and OOSA in playing a positive role in this area.

In recent years China was hit by major disasters like snow and ice storms in southern China, killer earthquakes in Wenchuan and Yushu, mudslide in Zhouqu and floods along the Huai River basin. In those instances, China, as a member of International Charter Space and Major Disasters, quickly activated that mechanism and acquired space data from other members through the mechanism, which played an important role in disaster mitigation and post-disaster reconstruction. At the same time, the Sino-Brazilian earth resource satellites, the FY meteorological satellites and environmental disaster mitigation satellites have also made relevant data and information freely available to other countries suffering major disasters to assist them in disaster monitoring and assessment.


Outer space is the common heritage of humanity. At present, there is a growing risk of weaponization of and an arms race in outer space, which is in nobody's interests. The Chinese government resolutely opposes this and strives to maintain peace and security in outer space. We have always been of the view that the best way to ensure lasting peace and security in outer space is the negotiation of a relevant international legal instrument and the Conference on Disarmament is the best forum for this work.

China is prepared, on the basis of peaceful use, equality and mutual benefit and common development, to strengthen exchange and cooperation with other countries in the outer space area so that space science and technology may better serve socioeconomic development and contribute to progress in human civilization.

Thank you, chairperson.

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