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House unanimously approves Philippine Space Development Bill

The proposal to establish the Philippine Space Development and Utilisation Policy and create the Philippine Space Agency was unanimously approved by the House of Representatives on the third and final reading.

As reported, the Bill received all 207 affirmative votes and without abstention.

According to the bill, it is the State policy to support the development of science and technology that shall foster nationalism and patriotism.

The State should also accelerate social progress such as the development of space technology and applications for national security and the benefit of Filipino citizens.

Moreover, the State shall ensure that the Philippines will have official representation in the international space community through the establishment of cooperative agreements and linkages on space development.

The bill provides for the establishment of the Philippine Space Development and Utilisation Policy (PSDUP) that shall serve as the country’s primary strategic roadmap for space development.

It will also embody the country’s central goal of becoming a space-capable and space-faring nation within the next decade.

The roadmap will focus on the areas of Space Science and Technology Application (SSTA) to address national issues.

In addition, it will promote the efficient use of space assets and resources, establish capacity-building measures for human resource development, and enhance international cooperation.

The following areas will be focused on in order to guarantee the country’s sustained progress:

  1. National security and development
  2. Hazard management and climate studies
  3. Space research and development
  4. Space industry capacity building
  5. Space education and awareness
  6. International cooperation

Likewise, the bill provides for the creation of the Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA) as the central government agency to address all national issues and activities related to SSTA.

The Agency will be attached to the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) to coordinate policies and programs and ensure alignment in national policies and priorities.

The Philippine Space Agency shall have the following functions and powers:

  1. Create, develop and implement national and international space policies.
  2. Implement the Philippine Space Development and Utilisation Policy.
  3. Advise the President of the Philippines and government agencies about space-related issues.
  4. Design, develop and construct the necessary space systems and facilities; as well as launch, track, and operate the satellites on behalf of the Philippine government.
  5. Collaborate with space-related agencies of other countries for the peaceful use and development of space technology.

The Agency will be composed of the Office of the Director General, the Offices of three Deputy Directors General and various divisions and offices to be created as deemed necessary.

The Director General will head the Agency and will have the rank and compensation of an Undersecretary.

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