Israel “killing its satellite industry”

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Bitter words were exchanged in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, with arguments over the country’s support of its satellite industry.

According to a report in The Jerusalem Post, Likud member Yoav Kisch stated that “The state has decided to destroy the satellite communications industry, even though it’s a national need. I don’t see a solution right now. I would be surprised if there was a solution within two weeks. With the explosion of Amos-6, the Israeli communications satellite industry has also exploded. The government ministries, the communications industry and the Israel Aerospace Industries need to reach an agreement on funding in the next two weeks. In my opinion, this will not happen.”

Kisch’s comments were made during a parliamentary Science & Technology sub-committee which he chairs.

The Jerusalem Post report said that during the committee’s discussion there were complaints that the loss of Amos-6 had forced Spacecom, which operates the Amos fleet of satellites, had been forced to rent a satellite (now called Amos-7) and this is expected to lead to the “shelving” of Spacecom’s Amos-8.

Kisch continued, “Unfortunately, we have been discussing the subject for a year and a half since the Amos-6 explosion. We are here to see how the communications satellite industry in Israel forges ahead.”

Other comments quoted by the newspaper suggested that Israel Aircraft Industries, which had built some of the Spacecom fleet, would have to lower costs.


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