A project to build a space technology research and development centre at the Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park, Hanoi is now being researched.
According to a workshop introducing JETRO Study Team’s report on this project, held in
Hanoi on Thursday, the total capital for this project totals US US$350 million, coming from Japan’s ODA sources. The project will be implemented from now until 2017.
The Hoa Lac Space Centre will be built on 9 ha. of land in the Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park, 30 kilometres from Hanoi’s centre. The centre will have a space technology operating zone, a small satellite assembly, integration and testing zone, a planetarium, a research and training zone and a ground station to receive data from satellites.
Japanese experts will help Vietnam manufacture a small satellite and apply remote sensing technology to serve economic and social development.
According to Takeo Matsuzawa, from the JETRO Study Team, the Hoa Lac Space Centre will have the most modern equipment. Thanks to this centre, Vietnam can cut 10% of their losses that are caused by natural disasters, according to the Japanese specialist. The centre can also help manage oil spills, forest fires, and prevent the illegal exploitation of timber.
Besides supervising disasters and managing natural resources, the centre can help Vietnam develop sci-tech and supporting industries.
Dr Dang Vu Minh, Chair of the National Assembly Committee for Science and Technology, director of Space Technology Institute, said the Institute and JETRO experts are still working on the feasibility report of this project. The report will be submitted to the Vietnamese and Japanese governments in late 2008.
In June 2006, the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) signed a framework cooperation agreement in the field of space technology.
On October 14, 2006 the prime minister approved the Strategy on Research and Application of Space Technology to 2020.
In a talk between the Vietnamese and Japanese prime ministers in October 2006, the two sides agreed that the Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park would be one of three key cooperation projects between the two countries.
On November 20, 2006 the prime minister signed a decision to set up the Space Technology Institute (STI) under the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology.
In November 2007, the joint statement of the Vietnam-Japan cooperation programme named “Looking to strategic partnership between Vietnam-Japan” defined space technology as one of the cooperation fields between the two countries.
In July 2008, the Japanese Ministry of Economics, Trade and Industry (METI) set up a consulting group, under the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), to do feasibility research of the Hoa Lac Space Centre.
In August 2008 the management board of the Hoa Lac Space Centre project was established.
On August 18, 2008, the Institute for Space Technology Institute and JETRO signed a cooperation agreement on writing the feasibility research report for the Hoa Lac Space Centre project.