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The competition heats up: The United Kingdom’s space agency has issued its proposed future strategy, focusing on a renewed involvement with ISS and the European Space Agency.
Following a public consultation and lengthy discussions across government, the new strategy, published today, concludes that continued involvement in the ISS and other programs via ESA membership is the best way to involve U.K. scientists and industry in human spaceflight. The document says the government will consider bilateral projects with other space agencies but fears always being the junior partner since the United Kingdom has no launchers or space stations. It does not think that the commercial launch industry is sufficiently mature for the United Kingdom to buy services commercially. The report also states: “The Agency will also consider its role in human exploration missions beyond Earth orbit, especially where this complements science and technology goals for robotic exploration.”
I wonder if the newly elected conservative British government agrees with this strategy. It appears to me that it was researched and written prior to the election.