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China trains space-related professionals from 17 countries
( 2003-11-14 21:53) (Xinhua)

China offered training courses on space technology and remote sensing applications for 29 professionals from the Asia-Pacific region from Oct. 20 to Nov. 14.

Luo Ge, director of the Foreign Affairs Department of the China National Space Administration, said the latest training program involves the application of remote sense satellites in disaster reduction, environmental protection and land resources survey.

The training, held in cooperation with the Office of Outer Space Affairs of the United Nations, followed two similar ones held respectively in 2000 and 2002, focusing on environment and disaster monitoring in the region, according to the official, also secretary-general of the Asia-Pacific Multilateral Cooperation in Space Technology and Applications.

The trainees included professionals from Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Fiji, Indonesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and China.

A similar training program has been scheduled for next year, noted the official.

Addressing the closing ceremony of the program Friday, Luan Enjie, director of the China National Space Administration, said China will continue to cooperate with countries in the Asia- Pacific region in the years ahead in the space sector in a bid to using space technology for sustainable economic and social development.

Describing the 21st century as "space century", the director acknowledged that the potential of space technology and applications has yet to be fully materialized, and international cooperation will help wider application of satellite remote sensing technology and communications in the Asia-Pacific region.

On Wednesday in Beijing, representatives from a dozen Asian and Pacific nations and United Nations organizations adopted the constitution of the proposed Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO), which is designed to promote the peaceful use of space resources and space applications in the region.

These nations represented at the Second Meeting of the Drafting Group on the APSCO Convention were Bangladesh, Brazil, China, the Republic of Korea (ROK), Iran, Malaysia, Mongolia, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Thailand, Pakistan, Ukraine, Chile, the UN Economic and Social Council and a UN office in charge of outer space affairs.

Luo predicted that the organization would be set up next year, and it has been unanimously agreed that the group will be based in Beijing.

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