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US instruments to be included in first Indian Moon Mission

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Mar 2 (UNI) India and the United States today decided to include two US instruments in the first Indian Moon Mission - Chandrayaan-1 -slated to be launched in 2007, and open up new opportunities for commercial space cooperation.

A memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will soon be signed by the ISRO and the NASA in this regard, a Joint Statement issued after talks between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President George Bush said.

"It will be a significant steps forward in bilateral cooperation in space," it said.

"The United States and India committed to move forward with agreements that will permit the launch of U.S. satellites and satellites containing U.S. components by Indian space launch vehicles, opening up new opportunities for commercial space cooperation between the two countries," the Joint Statement said.

Both the countries agreed to continue exploring further cooperation in civil space, including areas such as space exploration, satellite navigation and earth science.

It was agreed that they would work together to promote innovation, creativity and technological advancement by providing a vibrant intellectual property rights regime, and to cooperate in the field of intellectual property rights to include capacity building activities, human resource development and public awareness programmes.

The statement welcomed the US Department of Commerce's plan to create a license exception for items that would otherwise require an export license to end-users in India engaged solely in civilian activities.

Emphasising the importance of knowledge partnerships, New Delhi and Washington announced the establishment of a Bi-National Science and Technology Commission which both the countries will co-fund.

UNI SH PK DB1839

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