Philippines, Japan sign agreement for space projects


Posted at Jun 16 2021 06:36 PM

MANILA — The Philippines and Japan have signed an agreement on space cooperation for potential collaboration in space applications, satellite development, and promotion of space industry.

In statement released Wednesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the pact between Tokyo and Manila was signed on June 11 in a virtual ceremony.

Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA) director general Dr. Joel Joseph Marciano, Jr. signed on behalf of the Philippines, while Dr. Yamakawa Hiroshi of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) President signed for Japan.

"We bring to this cooperation our people and their experience from the Diwata and Maya satellites, along with our investments in ground infrastructure and capabilities for processing and analyzing spaceborne data. Together, we will create even more value from these activities and cascade them further to society," Marciano said.

Philippine Ambassador to Japan Jose Laurel said this year marks the 65th anniversary of Philippines-Japan relations and the 10th year of both countries’ strategic partnership. 

"Today is indeed a fitting tribute to a remarkable bilateral relationship," said Laurel.

This year, the Philippines' Maya-2 CubeSat was transported to the International Space Station through JAXA, and released in space for scientific imaging and store-and-forward communications. 

Maya-2 was completed by Filipino engineers in cooperation with the Kyushu Institute of Technology, with funding from the Philippine government through the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). 

Other satellites such as the Diwata microsatellites were also completed in collaboration with Japanese universities and launched through JAXA.

The Philippines also continues to engage in various activities spearheaded by JAXA, such as the annual Asia Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF), the National Space Legislation Initiative (NSLI) and the Sentinel Asia.