China to launch first e-commerce satellite in 2017


China plans to launch its first e-commerce satellite in 2017, with the primary purpose of using satellite data in agriculture.

Han Qingping, President of the Chinarocket Co., Ltd, on Monday announced the plan during an international aviation and aerospace forum in Zhuhai.

He said at the forum that launching such satellite has become imperative because in an era of space economy, the potential of a commercial space industry is immeasurable.

Qingping disclosed that in 2015, the value of the global space industry in China amounted to 330 billion dollars, 76 per cent of which resulted from commercial activities.

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Hu Chaobin, an official from the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense, said during the forum that Chinese authorities are making efforts, including legislation, to support and regulate the development of a commercial space industry.

He said China is speeding up the making of space law, with the aim of having completed drafting the law by the end of this year.

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