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Thales Alenia Space to design Turkmenistan’s first satellite

November 20, 2011, 21:48 UTC+3
The French company and the Turkmen Communications Ministry signed the contract on Friday
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ASHGAGAT, November 20 (Itar-Tass) —— Thales Alenia Space will design Turkmenistan’s first satellite by 2014.

The French company and the Turkmen Communications Ministry signed the contract on Friday. The ministry signed another contract with Space Systems International – Monaco S.A.M. to rent the prospective satellite’s position in orbit.

“The national satellite will spur on the development of modern communication systems and make the Internet accessible to every citizen,” Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow said. “The satellite will monitor cropland, survey oil and gas fields, evaluate environmental conditions and do other research useful for Turkmenistan’s economy.”

A decision to establish the Turkmen National Space Agency was made in May 2011. “The agency is bound to control satellite communications and space research,” the presidential ordinance said.

Russia’s Yamal satellite of Gazprom Space Systems is servicing Turkmenistan at present. It provides digital television broadcast, including that of many Russian channels.

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