September 13, 2018 / 12:46 PM / 10 months ago

British companies, academics excluded from EU Galileo space project if no-deal Brexit

LONDON (Reuters) - British companies and academics will be excluded from the future development of the European Union’s Galileo space project if the country leaves the bloc without a deal in March 2019, according to a series of technical notices published on Thursday.

The UK government said in the notice that companies currently involved in Galileo, Europe’s rival to the United States GPS program, may face difficulties completing their existing contracts and should contact authorities to try to ensure they can comply with the conditions of their contracts.

Britain has already said it is considering developing its own version of the satellite-based system to rival the EU project.

Regarding the EU Earth observation program Copernicus, the papers said that in a no-deal scenario, the UK will no longer be able to participate in it or have a role in how it is run.

The government said that while British companies and academics could not bid for future work, it was seeking clarity from the EU about the status of UK-based Copernicus contracts which run past next March’s exit date.

Reporting by Sarah Young. Editing by Andrew MacAskill

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