The UK's Satellite Applications Catapult has signed an agreement with the Jinjiang District People’s Government of Chengdu to establish a Sino-British Cooperation Centre.
Based in Jinjiang District, one of 11 urban districts of the prefecture-level city of Chengdu, the centre will provide both Chinese and British enterprises working in the field of satellite applications with partnership and investment opportunities.
The initiative has been launched to assist UK SMEs looking to enter the Chinese market, support UK companies to collaborate on innovative projects in the Chinese and Asian markets, and lead research and development projects to drive collaboration between China and the UK.
By 2025, the centre aims to create a US$4 billion opportunity for global export, by identifying significant global challenges that can be addressed using data from satellites.
Stuart Martin, CEO of the Satellite Applications Catapult, said: "The Satellite applications industry is by its very nature, global and the growth of the UK space sector relies on the take-up of innovative products and services by customers around the world. By creating a centre in China, we will enable UK businesses to access one of the largest markets in the world and develop a new range of collaborative opportunities to increase the global impact of our work.”
This development marks the beginning of a new focus of activity for the Satellite Applications Catapult, which already has operations in South America and has worked on innovative projects in over 22 countries.
This centre will be the Catapult’s first base in Asia and will create significant opportunities to continue its work in growing the UK economy, co-located in the world’s second-largest market.
The Catapult has already engaged innovative UK SMEs in initial discussions with Chinese partners, and will be actively seeking more UK companies and research organisations who are interested in developing products and services both for the Chinese market and in collaboration with Chinese businesses, researchers and investors.
The deal has been supported by Professor Yu Xiong, Chair of Technology and Operations Management in Newcastle Business School of Northumbria University, who has been an advisor and initiator of the project, and James Wang from ELI Holdings, who is acting as the Catapult’s sponsor in Chengdu.
Chen Lizhang, Secretary of CPC Jinjiang District Committee, commented: “As the centre of commerce, business, finance, and culture of Chengdu, we warmly welcome international corporations to make investments and do business in Chengdu city and Jinjiang District.”