Australian Space Agency inks deal with Queensland government

By Shannon Jenkins

Wednesday June 30, 2021

An MoU proposes the two entities collaborate. (Fox/Adobe)

The Australian Space Agency and the Queensland government have this week agreed to work together in a bid to grow the state and national space sectors.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), inked by the space agency and the Queensland Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, aims to support industry, leverage the ‘start-up ecosystem’, and develop workforce capability.

The MoU has proposed that the two entities collaborate on ‘mutual areas of priority’ such as Earth observation, communications technologies and services, leapfrog R&D, and robotics and automation on Earth and in space.

Other proposed collaborative activities include supporting the development of space skills and workforce capability; leveraging the emerging space start-up ecosystem in Queensland; and helping the state’s research organisations grow the space sector.

Read more: Calls for APS to improve space literacy

The entities have also agreed to:

  • Support Queensland businesses and research organisations’ participation in international space missions;
  • Support the development of a regulatory environment that allows the Queensland space sector to grow while ensuring safety and security obligations are met;
  • Promote Queensland’s space ecosystem and competitive advantages to attract investment to the sector;
  • Provide a coordinating point between the state government and the space agency on industry activity;
  • Identify, support and develop suitable projects of common interest.

The collaborative goals are in line with the Australian Civil Space Strategy 2019-2028 and the Queensland Space Industry Strategy 2020-2025.

Defence Jobs Queensland executive director Denise Johnston and Karl Rodrigues, an executive director at the space agency, will oversee the implementation of the MoU.

The deal has come a year after the space agency signed an MoU with the Northern Territory government. Similar deals were made with the New South Wales, ACT, Western Australian, and Tasmanian governments in 2019.

The State and Territories Space Coordination Committee is the forum used to review the progress made through these agreements.

Read more: ADF space command is the right next step for Australian space power


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