Arianespace has been planning and designing its Ariane 9 rocket for the best part of 10 years. It had been planned to launch a debut test flight this year. That plan is now subject to a severe delay.
Arianespace now officially says that the new rocket will not fly until the second half of 2021, but even that date is uncertain.
Much of the delay is being put down to problems in manufacturing caused by the Covid-19 virus, although construction problems on the Kourou, French Guiana launch pad are not helping.
ESA, in its statement, say they cannot provide an exact launch date but hope to have greater clarity in the next few months.