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Statement by Mr. LI Ge, head of the Chinese delegation, at the 49th session of Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of COPUOS



Mr. Chairman, 

First of all, please allow me to congratulate you, on behalf of the Chinese delegation, on your chairmanship at this session and to wish this session a full success.

Outer space is the common wealth of mankind and space exploration represents a relentless pursuit by mankind. The Chinese government views the space industry development as an important part of its overall national development strategy and has always adhered to the principle of exploring and using outer space for peaceful purposes.

In recent years, China's space industry has witnessed steady development in the three major areas of space technology, space application and space science. At the same time, China has carried out multifaceted international space exchanges and cooperation activities and has actively participated the relevant activities organized by the United Nations and other related international organizations. Now I would like to report to the plenary some of the main progress achieved by China's space activities in 2011.

I. Space technology

China conducted a total of 19 launches (including one failed launch), sending 20 different types of spacecraft into space. Meanwhile, the research and development project on a new generation of carrier rockets has made ​​significant progress.

In terms of manned space flights, space target vehicle "Tian-Gong No.1" and "Shenzhou No.8 " spacecrafts were launched into orbit. The two spacecrafts completed their space rendezvous and docking successfully, representing yet another major breakthrough in China's manned space technology.

In the area of lunar exploration, since the launch of the Chang'e No.2 lunar probe in October 2010, China has obtained  higher resolution images of the full moon as well as high resolution images of the Rainbow Bay area. China has also successfully conducted a number of expanded testing around Lagrangian point 2.

As for communications satellites, the successful launch of "Zhongxing No.10" communications satellite and "Tanlian No.1 " relay satellite has led to a substantial increase in the power and capacity of China's communications and broadcasting satellites, thus building up an initial capacity of space-based data transmission and monitoring and control services for space vehicles.

Concerning Beidou navigation satellites, three satellites were successfully launched, which have basically formed a regional Beidou satellite navigation system. That system has already started delivering services to China and some of its neighboring regions on a trial basis.

Regarding remote sensing satellites, China has successfully launched its first ocean dynamic environment satellite with all-weather, all-time microwave observation capabilities. China has also started the construction of a new generation of Earth observation system.

In addition, China has also successfully launched a number of scientific and experimental satellites of "Shijian" or "the Practice" series.

II.  Space applications

Space technology has been widely used by China in various fields such as meteorology, oceanography, disaster prevention and mitigation, environmental monitoring, communication, broadcasting, navigation and positioning, thus playing an important role in economic construction, scientific and technological development and social progress.

With respect to earth observation satellite applications, China's meteorological satellites are capable of providing effective monitoring over typhoon, flooding, forest and grassland fires, drought, dust storms and other disasters, with a significantly improved capacity for weather forecasting and climate change monitoring. China's ocean satellites can provide monitoring and application services covering China's territorial waters and the key areas of the oceans and seas of the world.  The accuracy of forecasting over sea ice, sea temperature and wind fields and the timeliness of the monitoring on severe ocean conditions have significantly improved. Land resources satellites have played an important role in resources surveys on land, agriculture, forestry, water conservancy and urban planning.

In terms of communications and broadcasting satellite applications, China has further improved its satellite radio and television networks, satellite-based distance education broadband network and satellite telemedicine network.  China strengthened capacity building for satellite emergency communication support services, which has provided important support in conducting rescue and relief efforts and in addressing major emergency events.

In terms of navigation and positioning satellite applications, the scope and fields of navigation and positioning satellite applications continue to expand with a rapid growth in market size. The Beidou satellite navigation system has been used in the fields of communication and transportation, marine fisheries, hydrological monitoring, communication timing, power dispatching and disaster mitigation and disaster relief.

III. Space science

Through the implementation of the lunar exploration project, China has carried out research work on the lunar topography, structure, material composition of the lunar surface, microwave properties and near-moon space environment, which has further improved our scientific knowledge of the moon.

Using the Shijian or Practice series satellites and "Shenzhou" spacecrafts,  China has also conducted research and tests on, inter alia, space life science, materials science, and hydromechanics under the conditions of microgravity and strong radiation. Space breeding experiments were also carried out.

Initiated by Chinese scientists, "the International Space Weather Meridian Circle Program", using Meridian Project as the core, is an attempt to coordinate the joint observation of the global space weather and joint research projects. In 2011, this program has achieved important progress in international co-operation with cooperation agreements signed with Canada, the United States, Brazil, Russia and some other countries respectively and was included in " the International Space Weather Initiative " put forward by UNCOPUOS.

IV. International exchange and cooperation

China has actively carried out various forms of international space exchanges and cooperation, participated in related activities sponsored by the United Nations and other relevant international organizations, and achieved positive results in this regard.

Since the UN-SPIDER Beijing office started its formal operation, China has provided, through the Office, drought risk monitoring products for the Horn of Africa and has contributed to regional disaster mitigation efforts  in many different ways by providing training, data services and disaster emergency rapid mapping services.

In line with the mechanism set out in the "International Charter on Space and Major Disasters", China has carried out cooperation with a number of national space agencies, thereby fulfilling its international obligations.

Asa response to the International Space Weather Initiative by UNCOPUOS, China hosted "the 2nd International Symposium on Substorms, Magnetic Storms and Space Weather" and the 4th Science Workshop on " the International Living With a Star Program".

Mr. Chairman,

On December 29, 2011, China published the White Paper on "China's Space Activities in 2011", which is the third white paper published by the Chinese government since 2000 on China's space activities. The White Paper presented and described China's major space achievements since 2006 and its main tasks for the next five years and reiterated China's unswerving desire to adhere to the path of peaceful development as well as the exploration, development and use of outer space for peaceful purposes.

On the basis of equality and mutual benefit, peaceful utilization and common development, China stands ready to actively strengthen exchanges and cooperation with other countries in the field of outer space and to keep promoting human civilization and social progress for the benefit of all mankind.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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