30 June 2021, Space Economy: Africa In Focus

UNOOSA is organizing a one-day virtual conference dedicated to enhancing growth of the commercial space sector in Africa. Dr Mahama OUEDRAOGO, Director of African Union, Education Science technology and Innovation will participate

Updated 04 July 2021

Context | Objectives | Program | More

High-level representatives from UNOOSA, African Union, Portugal and the private space sector both within and outside Africa will engage in peer-to-peer exchange of good practices to foster space economy growth in the continent.


The year 2020 saw the launch of the Space Economy Initiative under the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA). This initiative provides free-to-access opportunities to exchange expertise and insights of public and private-sector experts from across the global space sector. It leverages in-house expertise and peer-to-peer exchange to bring emerging and non-space faring countries to grow and maintain sustainable space economies.

The African space sector is estimated over USD 7 billion and projected to exceed 10 billion by 2024. This rapid growth has been catalyzed by a combination of public and private sector spending in the region. African governments have budgeted over USD 400 million towards space programmes and private sector companies are increasing commercial operations to generate revenue. These are focused towards meeting the demands of the market in terms of telecommunication, environment, education, health, security and more.

The main fragment of the African commercial space economy is driven by satellite-enable services and products mainly linked to communications satellite operators. Nonetheless, with new investments, research and innovation to the value chain, the regional landscape is shifting. The overall sector is continuously expanding and fulfilling Africa’s potential in a fast-growing segment that can make a vital contribution in addressing the continent’s challenges. With multilateralism, growing interest in Africa’s space economy and commercial space sector, a new era is emerging that addresses sustainable social and economic development within the region.

  1. Exchange expertise and knowledge to support African countries strengthening their space economies.
  2. Connect and provide visibility to the commercial space sector in Africa.
  3. Provide a networking platform for collaboration between stakeholders.
  4. Increase global awareness and understanding on how space sector growth can reinforce socio-economic development.

The event is open to the public, 30 June, 10:30 - 1600 CEST

Registration is available here: https://forms.office.com/r/XYj7jsNLsU
Following the conference, a written report will be published to share the case studies, insights exchanged and outcomes of the sessions.

Session One: High-level Opening (10:30-11:00)
  • Introductory remarks from:
    • Simonetta Di Pippo, Director, UNOOSA
    • Mahama Ouedraogo, Director, Education, Science, Technology, and Innovation, African Union
    • Hugo Costa, Director, Portugal Space Agency

Session Two: Expert-Level Discussions

[Part 1: (11:00-12:30 CEST)
Moderator: Veronica Cesco, UNOOSA]
  • Introductory Remarks
  • Presentations from speakers
  • Moderated Panel Discussion
  • Q&A from Audience

The Recording of the above parts are on UNOOSA's YouTube channel here

[Part 2: (14:30-16:00 CEST)
Moderator: Veronica Cesco, UNOOSA]
  • Introductory Remarks
  • Presentations from speakers:
    • Vivyann Meta, Dir. Business and Technical Services, LocateIT Limited - Kenya
    • Pauline Bourg, Business Development Africa, Airbus - Global
    • Olugbenga Leke Oyewole, CEO, Atlantic Factorial - Nigeria
    • Kammy Brun, Managing Director, Head Aerospace Group - Global
    • Amr Emam, Head of Space Segment, Nilesat - Egypt
    • SES - Luxembourg (TBC)
    • YahSat - UAE (TBC)
  • Moderated Panel Discussion
  • Q&A from Audience

The Recording of this part is on UNOOSA's YouTube channel here.

  • UNOOSA, The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) works to help all countries, especially developing countries, access and leverage the benefits of space to accelerate sustainable development. We work toward this goal through a variety of activities that cover all aspects related to space, from space law to space applications... https://www.unoosa.org/
  • NILESAT, is an Egyptian company and the name of a series of Egyptian communications satellites. It was established in 1996 with the purpose of operating Egyptian satellites and their associated mission control center and ground stations... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nilesat
  • NIGCOMSAT, is a nigerian company under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Communications... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NIGCOMSAT