The added-value of the space sector for EU economy and society, EU policies and EU citizens is obvious. The flagship components of the EU Space programme Galileo/EGNOS and Copernicus are fully operational and provide innovative space technology, data and services indispensable in the lives of Europeans (e.g. accurate global navigation services, extended Earth monitoring…).

The benefits for the European Union

Space Strategy for Europe

In 2016, the European Commission published a ‘Space Strategy for Europe’, with the following main objectives: maximizing the benefits of space for society and the EU economy, fostering a globally competitive and innovative European space sector, reinforcing Europe’s autonomy in accessing and using space, and strengthening Europe’s role as a global actor.

Learn more about the Space Strategy here.

EU Space programme

The EU Space Programme consists of several flagship programmes:

The components Galileo/EGNOS and Copernicus are fully operational as they deliver free and open data and services to the benefit of EU citizens, but they also deliver concrete products to public authorities and citizens (e.g. search and rescue, air quality monitoring, climate change mitigation measures, support to urban planning, geolocation, etc.).

The EuropeaGeostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) is Europe’s first venture into satellite navigation and paved the way for Galileo, Europe’s independent global satellite navigation system.

Galileo is Europe’s global navigation satellite system. It provides accurate and reliable  positioning and timing information for autonomous and connected cars, railways, aviation and other sectors.

Copernicus is the European Union’s Earth Observation Programme. It is a leading provider of Earth observation data, which is used for services providers, public authorities and other international organisations to improve the quality of life for the European citizens.


The EU GOVSATCOM initiative, which has been launched by the European Commission as part of the EU Space Programme, will ensure the long-term availability of reliable, secure and cost-effective governmental satellite communications services for EU and national public authorities managing security critical missions and infrastructures.

Lastly, with the operational Space Surveillance and Tracking (SST) capacity and in the near future, a reinforced Space Situational Awareness (SSA) component as proposed under the new EU Space Programme, the Union will also have an increasingly autonomous way to monitor and protect its space assets.

Learn more about the EU Space Programme here.

Space R&I

EU-funded space R&I provides cutting-edge solutions and ensures that the EU remains competitive in space and has the capacity to access and use space with a high level of autonomy. EU space research is supported through framework programmes. Horizon Europe is the current framework programme covering the period from 2021 to 2027.

Learn more about the structure of  EU space research policy and EU-funded projects