November 19, 2018 / 12:22 AM / 6 months ago

Airbus and Eutelsat sign UK satellite investment deal

Britain's Secretary of State for Business Greg Clark arrives in Downing Street, London, September 4, 2018. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

LONDON (Reuters) - European satellite company Eutelsat (ETL.PA) and aerospace group Airbus (AIR.PA) will on Monday sign a multi-million pound deal to build components of two new communication satellites in Britain, British business minister Greg Clark said.

The agreement between Eutelsat and Airbus will see key parts of the new satellites, including the platform structure, propulsion system and antennas, manufactured at Airbus facilities in Stevenage and Portsmouth.

Britain is keen to boost its space sector at a time when it faces a challenge due to Brexit. This has meant some UK-based companies have been excluded from future work on the EU’s 10 billion euro Galileo satellite program.

Earlier this year Britain announced plans to build its first spaceport for launching satellites at Sutherland in Scotland.

  “This investment is a significant vote of confidence for the UK’s world leading space industry,” Clark said in a statement.

“The spaceport will further develop our expertise and capabilities in the space sector enabling us to launch small satellites.”

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; editing by David Evans

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