Tuesday, October 26, 2010

France To Boost ESA Contributions

The French government and the French space agency, CNES, on Oct. 26 signed a new five-year budget contract that provides a 10.2 percent increase in France's spending at the European Space Agency (ESA) starting in 2011, the French Research Ministry announced.

The increase, which will bring the French contribution to the 18-nation ESA to 755 million euros ($1.06 billion) a year, is less than the 12.4 percent increase that CNES officials had been counting on until earlier this year. But the ministry said it would enable France to meet its commitments to its ESA partners for programs already agreed to, while also permitting France to pay off its debt to ESA by 2015.

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