MP for Windsor
Working Hard For You
Windsor MP asks questions on space policy in Parliament

On Tuesday 12th September Adam asked the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Department for an update on the work being made to ensure the UK’s continued participation in EU space projects (11:48:34 to 11:49:20):

 

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Questions, 12th September:

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): The ingenuity, expertise and experience of our UK space sector enables us to punch well above our weight and to collaborate globally in bodies such as CERN, ESA and many others that predate the EU. Does the Minister agree that we should continue fully to support the role that British companies play in both other European space agencies and the EU space programme?

Jo Johnson (Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation): My hon. Friend has great expertise in this area, through his association with the Parliamentary Space Committee. I can reassure him, as I did a moment ago, that we are committed to continuing to collaborate closely with European countries to develop our space sector to the benefit of all those in employment in this sector in this country.

The Chair of the Parliamentary Space Committee restates support for the space industry

Reacting to the crash of the Virgin Galactic test-flight in the Mojave desert, Adam Afriyie has called for a calm and reasoned response.

Mr Afriyie, who chairs the Parliamentary Space Committee commented:

“It is immensely sad to hear that one of the pioneering test pilots has died in the Virgin Galactic crash last week.

“Since William Huskisson, MP for Liverpool, was one of the first casualties of the then-emerging steam locomotive in 1830, the risks associated with the first generation of flight and transport technologies is well known. Trains and aircraft are now some of the safest forms of transport which have linked continents and boosted prosperity worldwide.

“It is only through innovation, trials, research and investment that sub-orbital space flight will become a safe technology for the public in the future, and we must thank the brave and experienced test pilots for the work they do.

“Whether it’s a public venture through NASA or private venture any fatalities must be investigated carefully, so that the causes can be identified and risks mitigated for the future, but it would be unwise, and unworthy of the test pilots, to halt progress.

“Commercial space flight is still in the early and experimental phase and every astronaut and pilot is aware of the risks when they choose to participate.

“Space exploration brings enormous benefits to us all and has been behind instrumental in developing technologies we now take for granted, such as mobile phones, cameras, SatNav systems, water filtration and medical scanning devices. The space industry enhances economic growth and technological advance not just in the UK, but globally.

“For the future of research, communications technology and high-speed travel, we must react calmly and sensitively to the sad news surrounding the Virgin Galactic test flight, whilst maintaining our commitment to innovation that will benefit humanity as a whole.

Contact:

 

Adam Afriyie welcomes Government commitment to UK spaceport

Adam Afriyie today welcomed the Government’s restatement of their commitment to a UK spaceport.

Adam Afriyie, MP for Windsor and Chair of the Parliamentary Space Committee, said:

“I’m delighted the Government has again committed to establish a spaceport in the UK by 2018. This shows the Government has the vision to imagine Britain as a global player in this emerging industry.

“As politicians we need to keep our eye on the future. Just like business people, we need to spot new opportunities first, and I believe the space tourism industry is just one of those opportunities.

“The UK space sector already supports hundreds of thousands of high-quality tech jobs, and space tourism create countless more in the future. The value of aerospace exports alone grew by 12 percent in 2013.

“Moreover, this will encourage young people to become the space scientists of the future, putting Britain at the forefront of this important global industry.”

Contact:

Notes to Editors:

  1. Mr Afriyie’s website: http://www.adamafriyie.org/

 

Adam welcomes the ongoing success of the UK space industry

Adam Afriyie MP has today welcomed a parliamentary answer published by the Minister for Universities and Science that restates the ongoing success of the British space industries.

Adam Afriyie, MP for Windsor and Chair of the Parliamentary Space Committee, said:

“The space industry continues to be a stand-out success for the UK economy.

“Over the last few years the UK space industry has grown by an average of 7.5 per cent per year, and it shows no signs of letting up. In fact the industry hopes to increase its annual turnover to £40bn by 2030.

“If Britain is going to be a great global trading nation once again, we must take advantage of our strong scientific and engineering heritage. Britain produces many highly technical products, like satellites, that the rest of the world wants to buy.

“The space industry has created new jobs to support the growing use of mobile phones, mobile internet and sat nav devices. The UK Space Agency expects the industry will support 100,000 high-quality jobs by 2030.

“The space industry continues to go from strength to strength because of the hard work and innovative thinking of all those working in the sector, including those people working for companies, researching in universities and supporting the sector at the UK Space Agency.”

Contact

Notes to Editors

  1. Mr Afriyie’s website: http://www.adamafriyie.org/.
  2. Copy of the parliamentary question: http://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2014-06-18a.200304 .h&s=speaker%3A11929#g200304.q0