Someone in India finally reads its proposed oppressive space law


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Link here. The analysis of India’s proposed new space law [pdf] is generally very negative, but strangely it avoids entirely the bill’s worst aspect, its requirement that everything launched by India into space must belong to the government.

Instead, the author focuses on how the bill’s broad language fails to deal with specific issues of insurance, the licensing of different kinds of space activities, and environmental pollution. In other words, it appears he cannot see the forest because of the trees.

In the end, however, in concluding that the bill as written does not serve the private sector he does make one good suggestion that I hope the Indian government takes to heart.

It will not do justice to the entrepreneurial community if this Bill is implemented as is. One of the exercises that can be conducted to align the Bill to enable a competitive ecosystem for commercial space in India is to conduct a review of international best practices in managing the space value chain and inducting them within the Bill.

In other words, read what other nations like the U.S. and Luxembourg are doing to encourage their private commercial space sector. India might find that the last entity allowed to own something in space should be the government.

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2 comments

  • Narayan Prasad

    hi Bob,

    Thank you for noticing the article :)

    newspaceindia.com and cf.orfonline.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Space2.0_Final_24Feb.pdf provide holistic insights on the state of private space sector in India.

  • Narayan Prasad: You are quite welcome. I was relieved to find someone in India who actually had read the draft law and didn’t like it. At the same time, I was disappointed that you made little mention in your column about the law’s power grab against property rights, its absolutely worst component.

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