On November 27, 2018, Zhang Jianguo, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Science and Technology and Administrator of the State Administration for Foreign Experts Affairs, Lowri Evans, Director-General of DG GROW of the European Commission, and Jan Woerner, Director General of the European Space Agency jointly chaired the Fifth Meeting of China-EU-ESA Dialogue on Space Technology Cooperation in Brussels.
Vice Minister Zhang Jianguo, Director-General Lowri Evans and Director General Jan Woerner addressed the opening ceremony respectively. Vice-Minister Zhang Jianguo reviewed the recent progress of China-EU cooperation in space and looked to future cooperation goals with the European side. Director-General Lowri Evans stressed that China is an important strategic partner of the European Union and that China-EU-ESA Dialogue on Space Technology Cooperation is an effective measure to implement the consensus reached at the 20th China-EU Summit. Director General Jan Woerner said that China and ESA have had a long history of cooperation and achieved fruitful results. He looked forward to working with the Chinese side to make new progress. All sides unanimously affirmed the important role of the China-EU-ESA dialogues on space technology cooperation in promoting China-Europe cooperation in satellite navigation, earth observation, space science and exploration and other fields since 2012.
The meeting established for the first time a working group mechanism. Before the meeting, China and Europe organized three working group meetings on satellite navigation, earth observation, space science and exploration. These working group meetings showcased the achievements of China-EU pragmatic cooperation in space science and technology and produced the results of the three working groups, which were reported at the China-EU-ESA Dialogue on Space Technology Cooperation. During the meeting, Vice Minister Zhang and Director General Jan Woerner signed a Dragon Program Cooperation Agreement. Both sides agreed to carry out the Dragon Program V, and to strengthen and continue the cooperation mechanism between the two sides.
In his meeting summary, Vice Minister Zhang Jianguo remarked that in the past year, China and Europe have made new progress in the field of space science and technology through close cooperation and that the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology will coordinate closely with various Chinese departments to strengthen cooperation with the European Commission and the European Space Agency, push China and the EU to join hands in opening up a new era of space science and technology, promote the rise and development of emerging space economy and boost green growth. Director-General Lowri Evans and Director General Jan Woerner said that there are broad prospects for China-EU space cooperation and that both sides should work together for common goals and achieve mutual benefit and common prosperity of both China and the EU.
Chinese participants in the meeting came from the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Chinese Administrative Department for Satellite Navigation Systems and Applications, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the China Earthquake Administration, and other research institutions and universities. European participants in the meeting came from the DG GROW, DG RTD, Joint Research Center and European External Action Service of the European Commission, EUMETSAT and the European Space Agency.