LA PAZ - Bolivian State-run Space Agency (ABE) and China Great Wall Industry Corporation signed a commercial contract Monday to build and launch a telecommunication satellite for Bolivia.
Bolivian Public Works Minister Walter Delgadillo told a press conference that this contract is a preliminary step to begin the manufacturing of the satellite named Tupac Katari.
The two sides will sign a financial contract later this week for this satellite, which will be sent into orbit 36 km above the Earth in three years.
Meanwhile, teleports and ground control stations will be built in La Paz and Santa Cruz respectively, the construction of which will be completed in about 32 months and managed by the Bolivian government, Delgadillo said.
ABE Executive Director Willy Herbas told Xinhua that this deal will allow Bolivia to have its own satellite by the end of 2013 or the beginning of 2014.
The satellite will provide telecommunication services in Bolivia and support the country's educational and medical initiatives.