Josep Borrell: War in Ukraine has shown the importance of satellites

EU representative Josep Borrel told the European Space Conference that the war in Ukraine showed how important space was for security. According to him, it is necessary to strengthen the capabilities of space for the observance of security on the continent.

Josep Borrell. Source:

Josep Borrell expressed his opinion on space security

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Joseph Borrell, said at the European Space Conference that Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine showed how important the topic of space was for security on the continent.

According to him, there are two important aspects of space security. The first is to own technologies based on the use of satellites. It was they that in the first months of the war gave the greatest advantage to the Ukrainian army due to the fact that it had better access to information about the movement of the enemy.

The second aspect is to prevent the enemy from taking advantage of their benefits in the space sphere. Here, Borrell cited as an example the Russian hacker attack on the Viasat satellite network, which occurred at the very beginning of the war. It affected not only Ukraine, but also a number of European users.

In particular, in one of the EU countries, the network of wind turbines was disconnected. Thus, the security of outer space is also the security of critical infrastructure. Therefore, Europe must be ready to counter these threats.

European Space Security Strategy

According to Borrell, financial investments in the space sector in 2021 increased by 9 percent. At the same time, the defense sector itself grew the fastest. In fact, investments in it have doubled over this period.

The total budget of the Earth’s space organizations in 2021 reached 103 billion dollars. There are 5,500 satellites orbiting the planet, 10 percent of which belong to military organizations. Given all this, Borrell announced a new plan for European space security, which would be fully unveiled in March.

It will consist of five main points:

  • Improved overall understanding of space threats;
  • Protecting space infrastructure and ensuring its sustainability;
  • Developing the ability to respond to hazards;
  • Strengthening space capabilities for security and defense needs;
  • Cooperation with allies.

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