International Partners Adopt Wait-and-See Attitude on NASA Changes

NASA Partners Await Policy Shakeout
Aviation Week

European and Japanese space agencies are awaiting further developments as the U.S. puts the finishing touches on its new policy for exploration, adopting a wait-and-see attitude until Congress funds a compromise space plan and NASA fills in the details.

Speaking at a Washington conference organized by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, representatives of the European Space Agency (ESA), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), France’s CNES and Germany’s DLR all expressed caution in the face of continued U.S. uncertainty.

“The NASA authorization bill does not provide information on which way we go,” says Andreas Diekmann, head of the ESA Washington office. Diekmann referred to the three-year NASA reauthorization bill President Barack Obama signed Oct. 11, which won’t be funded by an appropriations measure until a “lame-duck” session of Congress after the mid-term elections Nov. 2.

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