EU Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs Elzbieta Bienkowska urged the European Union to advance its space ambitions and consider setting up a European Space Force when speaking at the 11th Annual Conference on European Space Policy in Brussels. “Several member states are considering just now ways to strengthen their defense doctrine to [the] space dimension. They are talking about space forces,” she said Bienkowska. Ms. Bienkowska’s portfolio includes space policy.
“What is becoming a reality at the national level, probably should also become a reality at the EU level. We need to discuss, [on the] medium [to] long term, a European Space Force,” she said. The call for more to be done in the space policy comes less than a year after US President Donald Trump said he wanted to set up a military branch in space. However, Jorge Domecq, CEO of the European Defense Agency (EDA) said that Commissioner Bienkowska had not discussed the idea with him and added that, in fact, no member state had asked for it.
“I have of course heard about the concept being used by individuals here and there, but as a formal proposal, to my knowledge, it is not on the table at this point in time,” Mr. Domecq added and also pointed out that it did not seem illogical that the EU was thinking of how to respond to the Trump administration’s space force “proposal”. “The US is an important ally. … If your main partner is developing its space capabilities, its space policies in a direction, you have to take note of them when you are developing further your space defense programs,” he said.