Global Navigation Satellite Systems

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered on 26th May 2020.

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Photo of John Healey John Healey Shadow Secretary of State for Defence

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent progress has been made on the creation of a satellite navigation system.

Photo of Amanda Solloway Amanda Solloway Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

This Government has made clear its ambitions in space through a new ministerial level National Space Council and by developing a Space Strategy to bring long term strategic and commercial benefits for the UK. The Government recognises the contribution the space sector makes to our economy, national security, global influence and in helping the nation to tackle the COVID crisis.

The GNSS programme is currently in its Engineering Design and Development Phase to research and understand what would best suit the UK's requirements. The programme is taking the appropriate time to investigate the requirements, design specifications and costs as fully as possible. This includes assessing value for money, scope for innovation, new markets and how much a system could meet the UK's assured positioning navigation and timing requirements as part of an ambitious new space strategy.

The programme has recently proceeded with a number of technical contracts from April to September to deliver key engineering work whilst protecting skills and technical GNSS sector jobs.

A project led by the Cabinet Office is developing the UK's positioning navigation and timing (PNT) requirements, bringing together expertise from across Whitehall, industry and the PNT community to consider requirements across military, civil and Critical National Infrastructure sectors.

In addition to other technologies, a UK GNSS capability could form part of the mix of solutions needed.

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