Think Tank
Outer Space as a Business, State Affair and a Source of Sustainable Development
Valdai Discussion Club Conference Hall, Tsvetnoy Boulevard, 16/1, Moscow, Russia
List of speakers

On October 27, the Valdai Club in partnership with the Argentine Council on Foreign Relations (CARI) held an expert discussion, titled  "The future of outer space in international politics: Challenges and opportunities for cooperation between Russia and Argentina". The moderator was Oleg Barabanov, Programme Director of the Valdai Discussion Club.

In his welcoming speech to the participants, Ricardo Ernesto Lagorio, the Secretary General of CARI, emphasised that the topic of the use of outer space was essential in nature, with respect to the modern international agenda. He pointed to the successes of Argentine companies (some representatives of them participated in the event) in space exploration.

Evgeny Buydinov, Deputy Director General for Communications Systems Development and Operation at Russian Satellite Communications Company, spoke about the company's work in the field of satellite communications. The activities of their organisations were also presented by Leonardo Comes, Vice President of the Argentine Company VENG S.A., and Gabriel Absi, Vice President of the Aerospace Department of INVAP. Valentin Uvarov, CEO of Climate Monitoring System LLC, Member of the Space Council of the Russian Academy of Sciences, reported about his company's projects to monitor greenhouse gasses via satellites, and also raised the issue of possible areas of cooperation in space between private companies.

Emil Sayfullin, who works at the Department of International and European Law at the Institute of Legislation and Comparative Law under the Government of the Russian Federation, devoted his speech to topical issues of international space law. In particular, he pointed to the risks associated with American policy in this area, and directly to the Artemis Accords, as well as possible scenarios for Russia's behaviour. Valentin Uvarov, continuing the topic of legal analysis, noted that in connection with the commencement of space activities of a large number of private companies, now one can talk about the emergence of a space economy and the need to develop private space law. “At the same time, private space is an affair of state,” the expert said. He emphasised the need for state regulation, on the one hand, and for attracting private business to fulfil state tasks on the other.

“Using space technology for the good of society is a source of endless possibilities. We must work together to strengthen international cooperation to make space a sustainable matter,” said Carolina E. Catani, Technical Law Manager at the National Commission on Space Activities (CONAE). She stressed the importance of linking the space agenda to the UN's sustainable development goals and taking into account ethical principles when developing regulation for space. “Earth and space are not our property, but a treasure that we must pass on to descendants,” she stressed. Luis Castillo, Researcher at CONICET/UADE, gave a brief outline of the history of space law development and the related process of international interaction and cooperation. He paid special attention to the security aspect, and also to the evolution of legal regulation of the exploitation of outer space. The results of the discussion were summed up by CARI Academic Secretary Juan Battalleme.