On 6 April, Poland joined the EDA project 'EU SatCom Market' as the 23rd member. The project was launched by the EDA in 2009 to provide flexible commercial satellite communication solutions for contributing members.
Commercial satellite communications are used by all nations to provide extra capacity on top of their own military and governmental satellite communications. The EU SatCom Market project provides a flexible and cost-effective way of doing this because it offers its members a pay-per-use solution without imposing any binding financial commitments beyond services ordered.
Within the EU SatCom Market project, the Agency acts as the central purchasing body on behalf of the contributing members. In January this year EDA signed a framework contract with Airbus Defence and Space. Over the last year more than 40 orders have been passed adding up to a total of over 75 to date, with a total value €15.2 million since first order was placed in 2013.
The current 23 contributing members are: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, the United Kingdom, Republic of Serbia, the Athena Mechanism and the civilian missions EU-CAP SAHEL Niger, EUCAP SAHEL Mali, EUAM Ukraine, EUCAP NESTOR and EUMM Georgia.
With the Athena Mechanism and civilian missions as members, the EU Satcom project directly supports the full range of CSDP operations and missions.