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Western Australia positions itself as a home for the new Australian Space Agency

A meeting is set between Science, Innovation and ICT Minister Dave Kelly and the Australian Space Agency Head Dr Megan Clark AC in order to bolster the pitch to have the base of the agency in Western Australia (WA).

Minister Dave Kelly said that growing the space industry in WA will create local jobs, provide more opportunities for our local businesses and help diversify the WA economy.

According to the announcement released by the Government of Western Australia, WA has already been involved in the space industry for nearly 60 years.  It has been included in major projects such as the European Space Agency's ground station at New Norcia, a range of commercial space communications stations, the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre, and the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research.

A report was released by ACIL Allen in June. Space Industry Capability in Western Australia showed that Western Australia would be an ideal home for the Australian Space Agency.

The report mentioned that WA is equipped with geographic advantages and expertise required to have a thriving space industry, which is in alignment with the objectives of the Australian Space Agency.

Currently, 74 international and Australian companies that are operating in space and space-related services have a presence in WA.

Minister Kelly explained that the State Government had held an Industry Roundtable earlier this month. This is for the purpose of further solidifying WA’s position as the perfect home for the Australian Space Agency.

This roundtable had resulted with identifying new opportunities for WA in the Australian Space Agency. He shared that along with having WA as headquarters for the national space agency, there will be an opportunity for a locally-based mission control centre. Moreover, the McGowan Government is prepared to co-fund a new robotics and artificial intelligence innovation hub.

WA Is armed with the geography, capability and local expertise to have a successful space industry and it only needs the commitment of the Federal Liberal Government so the agency can be based in the region.

WA Chief Scientist Professor Peter Klinken followed up on the report and the industry meetings, adding that WA is incredibly well positioned to be the headquarters of the Australian Space Agency.

He also shared that working closely with Dr Megan Clark was a pleasure and that he looked forward to continuing to work closely with her to see how Western Australia can contribute to the development of the Australian Space Agency.

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