Weeks, after the Cabinet approved the Indian Space Policy 2023, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on April 20, released the regulation in which the government seeks to encourage and promote greater private sector participation in the entire value chain of the space economy, including in the creation of space and ground-based assets.
This much-awaited space policy comes after the opening up of the space domain in 2020 and was awaited by the space industry, which has been seeking regulatory certainty in taking up space activities.
“Subsequent to these reforms, the Government seeks to provide regulatory certainty to space activities by various stakeholders, in order to create a thriving space ecosystem. The Indian Space Policy – 2023 has thus been formulated as an overarching, composite and dynamic framework to implement the reform vision approved by Cabinet,” the ‘Preamble’ section of the policy said.
The ‘vision’ segment of the space policy says that the regulation aims to augment India’s space capabilities, pursue international relations etc, for national security, exploration of outer space and so on.
Through this policy, the regulation said that the government will focus on encouraging R&D in the space sector to sustain and augment the space programme, “create a stable and predictable regulatory framework” for private players and provide public goods and services using space technology.
It also aims to promote ‘space-related education’, including support to space sector start-ups. “Using space as a driver for overall technology development, nurture scientific temperament in the society, and increase awareness on space activities,” the ‘strategy’ section of the policy read.
Apart from that, the space policy provides specifics in terms of what a non-governmental entity (NGE) or a private player is allowed to do in terms of taking up space activities; the role of ISRO, and other government bodies such as Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre, ISRO’s commercial arm NewSpace India Limited (NSIL) and Department of Space.
“This policy is applicable to any space activity to or from Indian territory or within the jurisdiction of India, including the area to the limit of its exclusive economic zone,” it said.