§ Mr. Gerald Bermingham
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) what is the current level of investment in the British National Space Centre and the space-related industry; and if he will make a statement;
(2) what is the current investment through the European Space Agency in projects Polar Platform and Radarsat of the British Government; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
The British National Space Centre (BNSC) co-ordinates a civil space budget of some £120 million per annum. About £80 million of this is spent through the European Space Agency (ESA) on areas of activity in which United Kingdom companies and organisations participate. The remainder funds national and other programmes. The British space-related industry therefore benefits both directly and indirectly from the Government's total expenditure on civil space.
I refer the hon. Member to my reply on 18 April, at columns 350–51, to my hon. Friends the Members for Corby (Mr. Powell) and for Southend, East (Mr. Taylor), which gave details of the Government's investment in the ESA polar platform and the Canadian Radarsat.