Friday 27 October, French President Emmanuel Macron visited the Guiana Space Centre (CSG), where he was welcomed by CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall, the CSG’s Director Didier Faivre and high-ranking European space officials. Mr Macron was accompanied by Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, Corina Crețu, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, and Annick Girardin, Minister for Overseas Territories.
During his visit, Mr Macron was shown the various space activities conducted at the CSG, including an Ariane 5 being assembled for its flight on 12 December to orbit four satellites for Europe’s Galileo geolocation programme. In service since 15 December, Galileo provides unrivalled location accuracy that is driving innovation and spawning a host of new applications. Mr Macron also visited the site of the future Ariane 6 launch pad, where construction is being managed by CNES, taking the opportunity to spend a long moment talking with the men and women who are building this ultra-modern infrastructure and with young apprentices on their first work placements.
Europe’s spaceport at the CSG is one of the most sophisticated and efficient launch facilities in the world. It employs 1,700 highly qualified people and generates five times that number in indirect employment, equivalent to 15% of total jobs in French Guiana. CNES also works to support economic development in the region through the Guiana Mission, which ensures better cohesion of the agency’s actions in French Guiana, in particular its outreach efforts to engage young people and get them involved in the base’s activities and secure their future employment.
In his address to Mr Macron, Jean-Yves Le Gall said: “The Guiana Space Centre, one of CNES’s four centres of excellence, is especially honoured to welcome President Macron here today. Through France, Europe possesses here in French Guiana one of the world’s most sophisticated and efficient launch facilities. That success, which has been built launch after launch over the last 40 years, is set to continue thanks to the ambitious and resolute space policy led by the President and his government, whom I would like to thank most warmly here on behalf of the entire French and European space sector.”
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