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UK didn’t consult experts on OneWeb deal

August 12, 2020

By Chris Forrester

The British government did not consult the Ministry of Defence or other senior recognised scientific advisors prior to making a £500 million deal for the bankrupt OneWeb satellite business.

The NewStatesman news magazine, in a Technology report, states that the investment was driven through by Dominic Cummings, the controversial advisor to PM Boris Johnson, despite objections from the UK Space Agency which had warned that that OneWeb would need more cash and that the government could lose all the money invested.

Greg Wyler, the founder of OneWeb is on record as saying that OneWeb was burning through between $50-$100 million per month prior to its bankruptcy.

Opposition MP Darren Jones who heads up the all-party business select committee, and which has opened an inquiry into the proposed deal, said the country’s chief scientific advisor should have been consulted in advance of ministers making decisions, especially when it involves nearly half a billion pounds of taxpayers’ money.

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