Aerospace & Defence

UK Space Agency announces £20m International Bilateral Fund

25th April 2023
Sheryl Miles

The UK Space Agency has announced it is launching the £20 million International Bilateral Fund (IBF) to strengthen strategic relationships with international partners and boost new partnerships from emerging space nations.

The IBF, available to industry, research, and academia organisations, will initially provide up to £2 million to aid work with international partners on cutting-edge research projects like Earth Observation, space traffic control and space debris, and see further funding introduced over the next two years.

In collaboration with the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), the UK Space Agency will oversee the first segment of funding go toward 30 projects, where each shall receive up to £75,000.

If such project proposals prove successful, they are entitled to a second phase of IBF funding, receiving up to £1.5 million over the period of a year to increase scientific and commercial endeavours, while dynamically elevating the UK economy and support job creation.

This comes building upon the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT)’s current £370m investment plan to cement the UK as a global science and technology superpower by 2030.

Nadeem Gabbani, Founder and CEO of Exobotics said: “As the UK space sector grows with new innovations being rolled out on a weekly basis, and countless ideas still in the pipeline, it is an increasingly appropriate time to develop international relationships. The UK Space Agency is looking to support existing capabilities and provide much needed opportunities to secure the future UK space economy.

“Working with other leading nations within the space sector stimulates a greater knowledge exchange and can in turn help generate new space capabilities and catalyse further investment, but more importantly, secure the foundations of the new, emerging UK space sector which is now in an important, and somewhat sensitive phase of growth.

Consistent emphasis placed on funding and international relationships shall continue to kindle interest in the UK’s capabilities and better oversee the UK achieve its goals to become a space superpower by 2030.”

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