Belarus to develop national satellite communication, broadcasting system
DZERZHINSK DISTRICT (BelTA) – Belarus intends to follow the way of getting integrated into the global information space by developing the national satellite communication and broadcasting system. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko gave the relevant instructions as he visited the space communication center, which is being established in the town of Stankovo, Dzerzhinsk District, Minsk Oblast on 12 April, BelTA has learned.
“Back in the day we started out by providing satellite design services to other countries. Now we can create these satellites using manufacturing cooperation schemes. We can have our satellites inserted into orbit and don't need space launch centers for that. We control the satellite, get the product from it and sell it. Everything is in our hands,” said the President.
The head of state was informed about the project to create the national satellite communication and broadcasting system, which is being implemented in line with the contract between the Belarusian enterprise Precision Electromechanics Factory and the Chinese industrial corporation Great Wall. The Belarusian telecommunication satellite Belintersat 1 was successfully launched into orbit in January 2016 using a Chinese space launch center.
Chairman of the State Defense Industries Committee of Belarus Sergei Gurulev noted that it is now necessary to commercialize the satellite's services for the sake of getting profits down the road. Apart from selling communication services to foreign partners the promising project also targets the home market, including the army and other security agencies. A brand new stage in the development of communication technologies in Belarus is the idea. With Belintersat 1 in orbit, Belarus is on the prestigious list of slightly more than 30 countries that have a communication satellite of their own.
According to Sergei Gurulev, having three satellites at a geostationary orbit to cover virtually the entire surface of the Earth would be optimal. “If we need it today and if it is profitable, then it is a matter of national importance. We set out to implement the project bearing payback in mind,” noted the Belarusian leader.
Alexander Lukashenko underlined that just like in other branches of the national economy the most important thing is to sell the end product and see the target markets to provide the relevant services to. “If these endeavors go well, we will launch a second satellite. It seems we will need it for the sake of more reliable communication,” said the President. “The facility has many functions and our country needs it a lot. We are going to develop it. I am very glad that such jobs are available to young Belarusians. We will pay close attention to the matter.”
While talking to personnel of the ground-based control complex of the national satellite communication and broadcasting system, the head of state reminded that he set the goal of developing the space industry in Belarus in the past. Back then quite many opposed the idea as unnecessary. “We set out to explore these possibilities for the sake of the nation's development. We have learned how to plough soil, sow and gather in the crops. We have also learned how to make sophisticated industrial products. But these accomplishments have nothing to do with future progress unlike the space industry, the nuclear power plant, and the Hi-Tech Park,” stressed Alexander Lukashenko.
The President remarked that many other industries had decided to focus on the development of cutting-edge technologies. The number includes healthcare where more and more high-tech surgeries are being mastered. The education sphere is also getting adapted to meet today's demands. “The decision was made for the nation to live on and stay at the forefront of development,” said the head of state.
Going back to space industry matters, Alexander Lukashenko remarked that the space industry had in essence given rise to a number of enterprises. “The launch of the satellite, the construction of the flight control center gave jobs to many enterprises and thousands of people. The development of accompanying industries was my primary concern,” said the head of state.
Alexander Lukashenko was also made familiar with the organization of housing accommodations and amenities for the space communication center's personnel by visiting the multiple-occupancy building near the center. All the conditions for a comfortable life are available there.