The draft act establishing the Polish Space Agency has been submitted

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On the 5th of December 2013, during a press conference held at the Polish parliament, the representatives of political clubs announced the submission of the draft act establishing the Polish Space Agency – POLSA.

On the 5th of December 2013 a press conference in the Polish parliament was held. Participants included representatives of the all parliamentary clubs: Waldemar Pawlak (PSL), Jan Bury (PSL), Bogusław Wontor (SLD), Wojciech Jasiński (PiS), Andrzej Czerwiński (PO), Maciej Mroczek (TR), Arkadiusz Mularczyk (SP). Other participants represented the Space Research Centre (prof. Marek Banaszkiewicz), the Committee on Space Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences (prof. Piotr Wolański), the Polish Space Industry Association (Paweł Wojtkiewcz), the Emergency Information Center (Jakub Ryzenko) and the Students’ Space Association (Błażej Żyliński).

Mr Waldemar Pawlak (PSL, former minister of economy), informed on behalf of all participants, that the draft act establishing a special body to coordinate Polish space activities has been submitted. The Polish Space Agency will be supporting academic, scientific and industrial institutions in obtaining funds, tenders, and project related to space technology development and utilization. As for now these tasks are split between several departments in various ministries and other state institutions (CBK, PARP, PAN).

According to Mr Pawlak, the cost of establishing the Agency is estimated to be 10 million PLN (2,4 million Euro). The director of POLSA will be elected in a public contest. Pawlak also hopes, that  Prime Minister Donald Tusk, will allocate funds in the Polish budget to finance this project. Bogusław Wontor, the chairman of the Parliamentary Group on Space emphasized, that the Agency should be regarded as an investment, not as expenditure. The money invested will bring huge profits in the near future in form of new tenders, jobs and financial sources.

From the point of view of prof. Wolański and his colleagues, this act is rather the fulfillment of their dreams, which have lasted for many years – in this case, since 1957, when the first artificial satellite was launched.

As politicians noted, this conference was a rare opportunity to see politicians from various opposition parties, unified to realize one goal, which is crucial for the Polish economy.

Jakub Ryzenko from the Emergency Information Center, stressed that the whole Polish society will profit from the Agency, even if most of it will remain unnoticed. The wide range of advantages include among others: flood or mass event protection (as in case of EURO 2012 tournament). This Agency will also introduce new technologies to the public administration.

Paweł Wojtkiewicz from the Polish Space Industry Association, thanked the politicians for their engagement in space issues and the act initiation. He also assured, that more than 20 companies belonging to the Association are ready to support the Agency establishing.

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