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Innovation Ministry to Cooperate with Service Provider in Field of Space Innovations and Technology

The Ministry of Innovation and Growth and Axiom Space, a provider of human spaceflight services and developer of spaceflight infrastructure, will collaborate on space innovation, technology and research. Outgoing Innovation Minister Milena Stoycheva and the company’s management discussed concrete steps and opportunities for the development of the sector in Bulgaria. They signed a letter of intent for cooperation, which laid the first steps for a long-term and sustainable partnership to promote and develop the national space ecosystem, the Ministry reported here on Tuesday. 
The signed document underscores that Bulgaria has more than 50 years of space-related experience and the capacity to contribute to the development of space technologies in Europe.  “Bulgaria considers this area as a strategic asset contributing to the creation of new markets and business opportunities for the industry, including for small and medium-sized enterprises in the country,” Stoycheva said.
Any opportunities to support research and development activities needed to help the industrial growth of existing companies and start-ups in the sector will also be outlined, the document says.
The Ministry declared that it would bring together potential industrial partners, academia and other stakeholders who could benefit from the collaboration and facilitate the relationship between them and Axiom Space.
The Ministry of Innovation recalls that through the implementation of the Plan for European Cooperating States (PECS) with the European Space Agency (ESA) and relevant projects, Bulgaria has achieved collaborations in the field of space technology and space economy, which contributes to strengthening the capacity of the ecosystem. At the end of last year, Minister Stoycheva and NASA’s Administrator Bill Nelson signed Bulgaria’s accession to NASA’s Artemis Accords, which define the basic principles for global cooperation in space. With this, Bulgaria became the 32nd country to join the Accords.
The current administration of the Innovation and Growth Ministry has identified the space sector as a priority area, along with defence, chips, artificial intelligence, bio and green technologies, energy storage, engineering and metallurgy. 
At the end of February, Minister Stoycheva announced that an initiative to form a Space Agency in Bulgaria was being implemented. She then expressed the hope that the new structure being prepared could be a fact as early as this year.

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