Satellites - Enabling an inclusive and resilient Gigabit Society




19 October 2016

Brussels, 19 October 2016 

Satellites - Enabling an inclusive and resilient Gigabit Society


Rupert Pearce, Chairman of ESOA, the EMEA Satellite Operators Association today informed European Parliamentarians of the central role of satellite communication services in today’s digitized world. He spoke alongside Roberto Viola, Director General of DG CONNECT and Pierre Delsaux, Deputy Director General of DG GROW at a ‘Sky and Space Intergroup’ lunch debate on “Connectivity: A new Horizon for EU Space Policy” hosted by MEP Monika Hohlmeier.

Eurospace, ESOA and the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association - ACEA were all invited to discuss the role of satellite technology and services in enabling seamless digital connectivity and 5G services across Europe. The event comes in the year when the Commission is publishing its Communications on A Space Strategy for Europe and Connectivity for a Competitive Digital Single Market - towards a European Gigabit Society.

In describing the satellite role in today’s digital eco-system Rupert Pearce noted: “As well as extending their reach, satellites provide an invisible and resilient overlay for terrestrial networks. The ‘Gigabit Society’ implies millions of connections between people, devices, and things. This system of systems will require inter-connectivity and stability at unprecedented levels that terrestrial networks alone cannot deliver.”

Aarti Holla, ESOA Secretary General added “We look forward to working with DG CONNECT and DG GROW on implementation of both the 5G Action Plan and the Space Strategy to ensure that a maximum of citizens and business sectors can benefit from the unique reach and multicasting abilities of satellite networks”.

Giuseppe Morsillo, Secretary General of ASD-Eurospace said: “having a necessary complementarity between terrestrial and space-based infrastructures is essential to provide optimal connectivity in support of the EU action against the digital divide, to promote the development of the Internet of Things and to complete the transition towards a data-driven economy”.  Mr Morsillo insisted that this could only be achieved through “fair implementation of the principle of technology neutrality, with regulatory measures ensuring that technology neutrality does not wrongly turn into technology marginalisation or even technology avoidance.”

In reference to the Connected Car, presently a focus of DG CONNECT and Commissioner Oettinger, Roberto Viola, Director General of DG Connect said: "Satellite communications will play an important role in ensuring ubiquitous availability of infotainment and safety services as well as over-the-air software updates for cars and are therefore vital in making the Connected Car a reality in Europe".

Identified as a sector that already relies on satellite navigation systems, ACEA was also invited, with Joost Vantomme, Smart Mobility Director noting: “Connectivity and automation are key for ACEA members to unlock cleaner, safer and secure mobility. Smart vehicles require seamless communications networks and services and satellite communications can make an important contribution to coverage needs.”


About ESOA: ESOA is the world’s only CEO-driven satellite trade association whose membership brings together 21 European, Middle-East and African satellite operators and supporting members including service providers, manufacturers and launch service providers. Set up in 2002, the association’s mission is to provide a unified voice and a platform for collaboration for satellite operators to ensure the continued success of the sector and to broaden the opportunities for policymakers to leverage satellite services to fulfill their objectives.


For more information, please contact [email protected] / www.esoa.net / @esoa_sat

▶︎ SSIGPressRelease19-10 v2.pdf

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