A cabinet meeting held this week approved a draft law establishing the Rwanda Space Agency (RSA), signalling yet another step towards promoting advancement in earth observation technologies.
The Cabinet reviewed existing measures to further contain the spread of the COVID – 19 pandemic and approved a couple of measures effective immediately.
Rwanda joins other countries in Africa that have space agencies, including Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, South Africa, Angola, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, and Zimbabwe.
The new space agency is expected to be operational by July, according to the Ministry of ICT and Innovation Paula Ingabire.
Ingabire told The New Times that they were “working towards having the Rwanda Space Agency operational beginning July 2020.” She highlighted that the “decision to establish RSA is informed by the past investment we have made towards utilizing outer space technologies.”
The RSA will support prediction and planning in agriculture, environmental monitoring, disaster preparedness, as well as urban planning through the utilisation of satellite data and imagery services.
This comes a few months after the country launched its first satellite into space, thanks to the partnership between the Government and the Japanese Aerospace and Exploration Agency (JAXA).