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Paul Binsfeld (Company Nurse) : Luxembourg and the New Space Revolution

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By Paul Binsfeld, honorary consul of Luxembourg to Arizona and New Mexico, and CEO and founder of Company Nurse powered by Lintelio and Brett Mecum, a government affairs professional who is pursuing post graduate studies in Global Management: Space Leadership, Business, and Policy at the Thunderbird School of Global Management, Space Operations at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and in Air & Space Law at the University Mississippi School of Law.

“It's been said that space is hard. But space needs everybody. Luxembourg has chosen to lead the New Space Revolution and is pushing the destiny of humankind to the heavens.”

 

Why is the Luxembourg space program unique? 

 

The Luxembourg space program stands out as the only space program in the world with a focus on space commerce. In fact, the Luxembourg Space Agency (LSA) itself is housed inside the Ministry of the Economy. 

According to the Space Foundation, the global space economy currently boasts a value of $546 billion, a figure that Morgan Stanley projects will grow to $1 trillion by 2040

With its early and dedicated focus on commercial space ventures, Luxembourg has positioned itself as a leader in the commercial space sector. While some might have initially questioned the program's long-term vision, it quickly became the second country globally, following the United States, to develop a framework aligned with the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, paving the way for other nations like Japan and the UAE.

Luxembourg also demonstrated its innovative abilities by collaborating on and being one of the original signers of the Artemis Accords, thereby establishing the guiding principles for behaviors and norms beyond planet Earth. 

 

What must Luxembourg do to sustain its leadership in the space sector? 

 

Luxembourg’s space business framework and its access to space-related funding provided an incredible foundation for its program and allowed it to be the industry leader it is today. To maintain its leadership position, Luxembourg should continue its bilateral space agreements as well as develop incentives and partnerships with individual states.

As an example, our home state of Arizona is looking to enhance its presence in the space sector due to less favorable regulatory conditions in neighboring states. A strategic collaboration between Arizona and Luxembourg could bring great benefits for both regions. This could include joint incentive packages to attract companies in both locations and foster cooperation in space research between institutions such as the University of Luxembourg, Arizona State University, and the University of Arizona, all which boast robust and distinguished space-related programs. 

How do global geopolitical factors affect Luxembourg’s space ambitions?

 

The global landscape has become increasingly volatile due to Russia's assertive posture and China's expansive global aspirations.  These factors could potentially disrupt the world’s economic order, with negative implications for the space economy.

On the other hand, competition on a global scale, especially in the space sector, often acts as a catalyst for growth and innovation. For example, the United States finds itself in a new space race with China to reach the resource-rich south pole of the Moon first. China has even rallied its own coalition of nations to counter the Artemis Accords.

Given the significant presence of Chinese investments, particularly related to the “Belt and Road Initiative,” in Luxembourg’s banking sector, the nation is well-positioned to influence the unfolding dynamics of the new space race and global events and is poised to emerge as a key player in shaping global space policy in the years ahead.

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