Abstract

The Government of India has recently taken the crucial decision of ‘unlocking’ the space sector for interested private corporations. This comes as a positive change in the sector, especially since it was a monopoly of the state ever since its inception. The new reforms are aimed at development of ‘new space’ which aims at inclusion of the private sector in the upstream activities which include research, space manufacturing and ground systems. However, this does not, in any way, imply that the ISRO is being privatized or being completely handed over to the private sector. This step shall only help ISRO to thrive and focus on its main function which is Research & Development and exploration of space.

This blog aims to throw light on the existing space-related infrastructure in the country, the reforms being introduced towards its improvisation, the modes being adopted in order to encourage private sector participation, its comparison with initiatives taken up globally and lastly, the issues and challenges that the sector might face while moving forward.

Introduction

Space is vast and intriguing and our planet Earth is a part of it. Humans are inherently curious creatures, and this curiosity has resulted in numerous revolutionizing discoveries by mankind- the discovery and exploration of space is one such striking example. A large number of countries in the world have established dedicated organisations for conducting research and carry out experiments in space-related activities. They have also launched various missions in order to learn more about the mysterious entity known as space. India is among such space-faring nations and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is the country’s primary agency, under the aegis of the Department of Space, dedicated to space R&D. ISRO is one of the most well-developed formal space programmes in the world and has made incredible achievements ever since its inception in the year 1969.  However, the onus of handling all space programs of the country while over-seeing the work of Antrix, the commercial arm of ISRO, is far too burdening for a single organization with the primary aim of promoting R&D in Outer Space activities.

Thus, recently in an unprecedented bid to promote upstream space activities in the country while increasing self-reliance, theGovernment of India has proposed to allow the participation of private sector into the industry. This blog discusses in detail the policy introduced by the government for this inclusion and the aim and rationale behind such an inclusion, while highlighting the various reforms undertaken by the government and it shall also compare India’s approach with that of other space-faring nations when allowing private sector to participate in this parlous sector. Through a thorough analysis, the blog concludes with the major issues and challenges anticipated and a way forward to successful orient this remarkable reform.

Gamut and Rationale of Reforms

The Central Government on June 24, 2020, allowed the entry of private players in a wide range of space-related activities, including planetary exploration missions. One of the major steps to further this initiative was the creation of Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe), a nodal agency which will act as a facilitator and regulator for private participants. The main role of IN-SPACe is to assist, promote and regulate the private sector in carrying out their operations as well as to fulfill their technical and infrastructural requirements. It will act as an interface between ISRO and the private corporations and determine the way in which India’s resources must be utilized in varied space-related activities. This will not only reduce the over-reliance of the sector on the state but also contribute towards technical innovation, economic growth, capacity building, an easy access to the interested private players, and democratization of knowledge in the space industry of India. Thus, with the ‘atma nirbhar bharat mission’ in mind, the aim is to evolve the upstream space activities in the country and make India the ‘space manufacturing hub of the world’.

IN-SPACe shall be headed by a Chairman, under whom shall be full-time members, member from the industry and academia and DoS. The private players interested to enter the market and carry out space activities shall have to gothrough an application process which is designed as a close loop system, so that the procedure remains transparent. There is also a provision for dispute resolution. This autonomous body shall also be responsible for permitting the following activities such as building of launch vehicles, establishment of new infrastructure facilitiesby NGPEs, and to work out a suitable mechanism to share technologies and expertise at a reasonable cost 

Dr. K Sivan, Chairman and Secretary in the Department of Space (DoS) addressed a webinar- ‘Unlocking of India’s Potential in Space Sector’ in August 2020 wherein he clarified the misconception that the decision of establishing (IN-SPACe) is not a step towards privatization of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).He further stated that: “In fact, the activities of ISRO are going to increase and ISRO will be able to better utilise its resources in taking up developmental as well as capacity building activities of the government, rather than the routine production activity,” .He clarified that this was a much-needed step for the development of the space sector in India which currently holds only 3% share in the global space economy, the total worth of which is $360 million. The private Indian space industry is mostly involved only as a supplier of components and sub-systems and has failed to compete in the market related to launching of rockets and satellites. This is due to the fact that services like launching satellites and rockets require the presence of state-of-the-art infrastructure and heavy investments. Further, Indian industries lack the technology and resources to conduct independent space projects of the same nature as foreign companies like Space X have managed to accomplish. Thus, the facility-sharing model of IN-SPACe to allow private participants to access ISRO’s facilities will be a major way of removing this bottleneck.

Another reason for allowing the entry of private players in the sector is that ISRO has been overburdened and some of its responsibilities had to be shifted to other organizations in order for it to dedicate all its resources towards R&D. ISRO is essentially a scientific organization, the main objective of which is exploration of space and conducting scientific missions. However, currently many of its resources are diverted towards activities that lead to delays in its strategic objectives.

The demand for space-based applications and services has grown by leaps and bounds even within the country over the last few years. These services have become essential for sectors such as agriculture, weather, transport, urban development since they require satellite data and imagery. However, ISRO was unable to cater to all these growing demands. Dr. K Sivan was quoted stating that the organizationwould have to expand its operations by upto 10 times in order to meet these ever-growing demands.

It is important for the private sector participants to consider that they will have to perform the R&D activities and business viability studies on their own. Other elements such as funding and finding customers would also be within the scope of thie work. The ISRO Chief pointed out that these companies could start withmanufacturing communication satellites since they fall under the embargo list as per the ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ mission and they will be required in large numbers in the future. One of the most recent examples being the application of space technology in the education sector since institutions all over the country had to implement distance learning owing to the spread of Covid-19 pandemic. It is reported that 19 states are using satellite communication technology for sharing educational content in digital mode under theTele-education Programme. Another such opportunity that the private sector can take advantage of is launching of small satellites since they are estimated to be in huge demand in the coming years. R. Uma Maheshwaran, Scientific Secretary to ISRO also stated that the private sector can also consider participating inend-to-end space activities in order to expand the space economy.

During the monsoon session of the Lok Sabha in July 2021, MoS for Science and Technology Dr. Jitendra Singh informed thatthe government received 27 proposals from the private sector for a number of space-related activities such as building owning & operating satellites, building and launching launch vehicles, providing satellite-based & mission services, research deals. The ministry indicated that this is a welcome step towards the development of India’s space sector and stated that: “The global space economy is poised to grow over a trillion dollars in the next two decades. With the space sector reforms, the Indian private space industry is slated to contribute to the core elements of the global space economy

Modes to Include Private Players

Making India the ‘space manufacturing hub of the world’ and having private sector contribution in ‘end-to-end space activities’ are ambitious goals. Given the low liquidity of the start-ups in this sector and the high amount of investment required for any activity in this nascent sector, it is imperative for the government to place certain aids that will nurture the growth, establishment and contribution of the private sector in space activities.

  • Facility sharing through IN-SPACe

To allow the private sector to operate in the space sector, the government needs to specify certain modes in which this can be made possible. One such mode of including the private sector and allowing it to conduct business activities is that of facility sharing wherein start-ups and private firms would be able to use the facilities and assets of ISRO for capacity building. It is pertinent to note here that a limited number of private companies in India have taken up the initiative of developing their own launch vehicles, similar to ISRO’s PSLV rockets. ISRO has stated that it shall be open to sharing its facilities that include its infrastructure, scientific and technical data, with all such private firms, given that they have an approval from IN-SPACe. It has further stated that it would also provide land within theSriharikota launch station to such private companies that wish to build their own launchpad. It has been announced that two private firms will test their engines at ISRO’s spaceport and rocket centre facilities located inSriharikota and Thiruvananthpuram, respectively and two firms- SpaceKidz and Pixxel have already tested their equipment atUR Rao Satellite Centre (URSC).

  • Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Model.

ISRO is also considering Public-Private Partnerships (PPP model) as a mode to include the private sector in space exploration. In May 2020, it was reported that a consortium of companies, led by L&T and HAL, were working to build its own PSLV in association with the agency. At the same, ISRO had also invited interested private firms to propose solutions for problems faced by it with respect to its maiden human space flight Gaganyaan-1. For several decades, ISRO was solely responsible for the end-to-end activities in the Indian space sector, however, start-ups like Pixxel, Bellatrix Aerospace, TeamIndus, Dhruva Space and Astrome have now taken entered the sector too. In September 2021, the DoS signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Skyroot Aerospace, a start-up based out of Hyderabad and Agnikul Cosmos, a Chennai-based space technology start-up. ThisMoU not only allows Agnikul to access ISRO’s facilities and expertise but also it to test its 3D-printed cryo engine. Both these space technology-based start-ups have raised $11 million during their Series A funding round which is the biggest deal made by private players in the space industry in India. Srinath Ravichandran, Co-Founder and CEO of Agnikul stated that with the entry of private firms in the space sector, the onus has shifted on them to take it to the next level.

Mr. Rakesh Sashibhushan, CMD of Antrix Corporation, the commercial arm of ISRO, stated that: “ThePPP model of engagement should be followed up by ToT (Transfer of Technology)…”A robust technology transfer mechanism is required to be set up in India since only a handful of industries currently in India have the expertise to manufacture and design space subsystems. Technology transfer policy coupled with buyback arrangements will ensure that the industry players are on level-playing field with their international competitors. The NITI Aayog recommends a layered ToT mechanism for the Indian market, wherein during the initial phase the private sector will only be required build components and subsystems, according to designs provided by ISRO. The next phase will follow the ‘build to specifications’ model in which ISRO will provide the private company with technical specifications and the latter shall design the component prior to manufacturing it. In the next and final phase, when the private companies are experienced enough to operate end-to-end systems, ISRO will inform them about its requirements, and the latter has to design, develop and commercially manufacture launch vehicles and spacecrafts depending on their own expertise. This phase will be called as the build to requirement’ stage.

Public Procurement and Subsidization

A crucial role shall be played by Antrix Corporation, a company owned by the government and under the supervision of DoS and NewSpace India Ltd, a PSU and commercial arm of ISRO in encouraging the participation of private participants in the space market through public procurement. These organisations will award contracts to the interested private firms which will eventually help such companies establish their bases in the industry. With the introduction of IN-SPACe, the role of these organisations has been re-defined and they shall now adopt a demand-driven approach rather thanbeing supply-driven. Additionally, in order to facilitates the grant of licenses and to avoid any delays and/or political bottlenecks, IN-SPACe has introduced a single-window licensing system. The government could also provide incentives in the forms of subsidization and loans to the manufacturers when, particularly since the sector is at a very nascent stage currently.

Private Participation across Global Space Agencies

The world’s first artificial satellite ‘Sputnik 1’ was launched in 1957 by the erstwhile USSR, followed by USA in 1958. Since then, the space sector has grown exponentially with various countries having their own dedicated space agencies and space missions. The following are major space agencies that have reached significant achievements in space technology:

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), USA:

The Space technology Mission Directorate (STMD)is a wing of NASA responsible for developing “crosscutting, pioneering new technologies and capabilities necessary for NASA to achieve current and future missions. Thesehigh-payoff, revolutionary technologies are rapidly developed, demonstrated, and integrated through collaborative partnerships.”. The benefits of this collaboration with the commercial sector are threefold: i) by leveraging these emerging technologies, NASA can meet its strategic goals and at the same time fulfill industry requirements;ii) NASA can reduce its development costs; and iii) it will help NASA compete with other national space agencies while also contributing towards the economy of USA.

In order to achieve all this, NASA has proposed a solicitation- ‘Utilizing Public-Private Partnerships to Advance Tipping Point Technologies’. Through this, NASA is aiming to foster projects developed by commercial players and use them in its future missions. The PPPs created through this proposal shall combine its resources together with NASA, contribute at least 25% of the total project costs and lead the research and development of cutting-edge space technologies. As the name suggests, a technology is said to be at the ‘Tipping Point’ if: “an investment in a demonstration will significantly mature the technology, increase the likelihood of infusion into a commercial space application, and bring the technology to market for both government and commercial applications.”The focus areas for this Tipping Point would be on the commercial entities working on space technologies dedicated to the development of in-space capabilities, efficient and safe transportation through space, and making planetary surfaces more accessible. The commercial entity heading each of these projects (allotted as part of firm-fixed-price contracts) shall receive milestone funding of up to$10 million from STMD spread over a period of 36 months. In October 2020, NASA announced that it will be partnering with 14 private companies (including SpaceX, Lockheed Martin, Dynetics, Blue Origin etc.) under the Tipping Point solicitation in order to develop ingenious technologies for its Artemis operations on the moon. These projects are projected to be completed by the end of the decade and their combinedaward value is estimated be to be $370 million.

Additionally, NASA also has the Commercial Crew Program (CCP) from which government funding is channeled into its commercial partnerships, Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, to name a few. This arrangement has a different mode of partnership between NASA and the private entity. This is because in the earlier model, NASA used to hire private firms such as Boeing, and provided it with a compendium of its standards and requirements to build its components and systems. NASA closely worked with the private firm and was involved at each phase of the development like processing, testing, launching etc., and eventually after its completion, the ownership of the spacecraft along with its operating infrastructure went into NASA’s hands. On the other hand, in the present arrangement under the CCP, NASA provides its monetary and technical resources to the private entities involved but they have thediscretion to design the systems as per their own expertise. In this case, NASA only gets involved at the stage of certification i.e., when it has to decide whether the technology so developed, fits within the standards set by it, prior to signing the contract. However, companies can also choose to develop their systems as per NASA’s pre-determined standards. So far, these companies have been reported to have received around $7.2 billion, and SpaceX, which has proven to be one of the most successful space tech companies in the US, is one of the best examples here. During its initial years, this company operated on a budget of $1 billion, half of which came from theCCP contracts. It must, however, be pointed out here that the efficiency and cost -reduction achieved through the CCP is yet to be seen.

  • European Space Agency (ESA), EU:

ESA is an intergovernmental organization, comprising of 22 member states and headquartered in Paris, France. The European space industry led by the European Commission (EC) is mainly focused on the peaceful utilization of space, and its activities include- observing the Earth, launching satellites for navigation and exploring the outer space. The involvement of the private sector with ESA is quite prominent, its presence can be witnessed in a wide range of entire space value chain from manufacturing launchers for satellites to operating them. One of the most successful examples are theAriane and Vega programmes at ESA which are involved in the launching activities at Centre Spatial Guyanais (CSG) and Future Launch Preparatory Programme (FLPP). These launchers are designed, developed and manufactured by the private sector players and the public sector is represented by the ArianeGroup. Further, private sector participants in EU are also trying to develop micro launchers, capable of carrying a load of upto 500 kg to the lower earth orbit.

The presence of the private sector can also be seen in the space exploration activities conducted by ESA, which is the very reason behind its creation. The private sector has been given the responsibility for designing, developing and manufacturing spacecrafts and other related components for ESA’s upcoming missions, namely– ExoMars (Mars exploration mission) andJUpiter ICy moons Explorer or JUICE(mission to the Jovian system).This PPP in Europe has reached the ‘build to requirement’ phase, which means that ESA notifies the private firms about its requirements, and they are responsible for all the end-to-end activities like designing, developing and manufacturing the components. In order to further encourage the participation of private sector in upstream activities like lunar exploration, ESA has also introduced the concept of ‘Moon Village’ where it will be acting as a steward. In this role, the ESA plans to act as a mediator between different entities involved in lunar resource exploitation. For e.g., it may help a lunar resource exploitation firm to set up lunar resource utilisation infrastructure by connecting the entity with a lunar lander manufacturer and a launch provider.

Additionally, PPPs are also part of the downstream activities that ESA undertakes such as navigation, communication and Earth observation. The European Investment Bank (EIB) during its Web Summit in December 2020 announced a venture debt financing agreement of up to€ 20 millionSpire Global, a start-up in the ‘new space’ sector of Europe.It was pointed out during this summit that the EU has its flagship programmes like Copernicus and Galileo which have made it autonomous and capable in terms of space-related activities. The European market is also encouraging the upcoming ‘new space’ sector with the help of funding vehicles, however, risk capital is still unavailable to these new space tech start-ups which makes it very difficult for them to expand commercially. This is one aspect where ESA lag behind the national space agencies of USA and China. In order to overcome these issues, the EIB has introduced the feature of venture financing.

  • China National Space Administration (CNSA), China:

China’s private space industry, although at a very nascent stage, is growing rapidly with the emergence of almost over 160 private firms in the space sector. Since its inception, China’s space industry has been dominated by two of its state-owned enterprises, viz.- CASIC and CASC and they are responsible for developing and manufacturing components and systems required by the state space agency, such as launch vehicles, satellites, deep space explorers etc. the CNSA has made major strides in the ‘space race’ with the help of these two organisations which are heavily funded by the state, have access to advanced technology developed by highly trained personnel.

Theprivate participants in China’s space industry mainly started growing in the year 2014 which was when the newly incumbent government realized that such partnerships could bring about new and innovative inventions into its space sector. Namrata Goswami, a geopolitics expert studying the Chinese space program was quoted as saying: “Xi’s goal was that if China has to become a critical player in technology, including in civil space and aerospace, it was critical to develop a space ecosystem that includes the private sector…He was taking a cue from the American private sector to encourage innovation from a talent pool that extended beyond state-funded organizations.”

One ofChina’s leading think tanks– Future Aerospace has reported that the total investment in Chinese private space firms was US$550 million in 2018 and is estimated to rise up to US$4.7 billion. These companies are currently involved in the downstream space activities such as manufacturing and launching of satellites since the demand for commercial satellites for a multitude of services has skyrocketed. In November 2020,Ceres-I, a rocket designed to take 770 pounds of payload into the lower Earth orbit, was built and launched by a private Chinese firm, Galactic Energy which also holds the title of the first Chinese company to reach space in 2019.

It is pertinent to note here that China is following the same approach as USA to involve private sector’s participation in its space sector. The Chinese government is offering subsidies and signing contracts with interested participants in order to boost their business and make them familiar with the industry activities. Another tried-and-tested approach is being adopted-funding through venture capital which was estimated to be US$516 million in 2018. There are private companies like LandSpace and MinoSpace that have also managed to bring foreign investors which would make it easier for them to compete globally. However, these companies have not started making profits yet and they not yet made any landmark innovations that could help them to capture the market. The Chinese market in this context might face setbacks as compared to US-based companies like SpaceX or Blue Origin which were venture owned by billionaires, ready to take risks. It also an implied fact that these companies are not autonomous and have to operate as per the guidelines of the Chinese government and the boundary between a state-owned corporation and a private company are extremely thin in these cases as the government itself is involved in some of these projects at multiple stages. Lastly, China, despite of being a major space power, does not have a dedicated legislation towards commercialization of space. The state authorities need to develop a robust legal framework to ensure the smooth functioning of the sector.

  • Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Japan:

The Japanese state agency has always been a leader with respect to space-related developments, it was the third country to venture into space. It also has thelandmark achievement of bringing a sample back from an extraterrestrial body to its name. But, in the last decade the involvement of private sector players in this industry has increased sharply and Japan is taking steps to welcome these changes in its system, keeping in mind the benefits of entering into the ‘new space’ market. Mr. Manasuri Tsuruda, from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Economy states: “For the industry to realize sustainable growth,a shift from the government to the private sector is urgently needed,” Keeping in mind the goal of sustainable growth and innovation in the space sector, the Japanese government has taken up multiple initiatives in order to encourage the growth of its private space sector. There are majorly 3 areas where the government aims to focus: First, law-making and its enforcement. Japan has enacted the Basic Space Law and the Basic Space Policy in 2008 and 2013, respectively. Both these legislations have laid down the space policy of the government and one of its policy goals include encouraging private sector participation. Further, in 2017 the Japanese government also announced that it plans to double the size of its space industry by 2030 (around US$21 billion) via itsSpace Industry Vision 2030. The second aspect is procurement policy. It is clear that JAXA is adopting the model used by NASA by contracting with private firms for the development of state-owned and operated systems. In this model of procurement, the government acts as the main investor as well as the customer. Thirdly, the government is also funding research and development of new and innovative ideas. It has come up with a new way to incentivize the innovative business community and has launched a competition ‘S-Booster’ offering prizes up to 10 million yen.However, these changes are not easy to come by, mainly because in comparison to the American or European markets, the domestic market in Japan is very small and the industry private players are not yet globally competitive.

In comparison to countries discussed above, India is at a very nascent stage of privatization of its space sector. However, it would also be useful to highlight here that the policies of none of the above countries have displayed results indicating either success or failure of their adopted systems. Most of them have adopted the model adopted by NASA, which seems to have been the most successful one so far. Therefore, India can start by incorporating all their best practices and compiling them all into a legislation dealing with all the issue that have or might come up in the foreseeable future.

Issues and Challenges

As discussed earlier, ISRO plans to engage the private sector in the development of space technology in India through a variety of modes including PPPs. However, these contracts have proven to be highly controversial due to the concerns that publics returns on the investment are lower than that of the private funder. There is a lack of understanding regarding the meaning of public-private partnership as the phrase can include hundreds of different types of long term contracts and this makes it very complex to assess whether they have been successful or not. Thesecontracts usually consist of various documents which define the relationship between the parties involved, laying down their rights and duties, allocating risk and dispute resolution mechanisms. Most PPPs are signed for a term of 20-30 years, but the time period is decided keeping in consideration the nature of the project being undertaken, the policies of the state and its financing conditions. It is pertinent to note that it is necessary in such partnerships for the private entity to accept responsibility for delivery of services and the procuring authority to commit to the project during its entire term. A contract is supposed to be clear, comprehensive and provide certainty to the contracting parties, however, PPP contracts are long-term, risky and complex. Due to the long-term operating period of these contracts, they tend to be incomplete as they do not contain measures to deal with future conditions. Therefore, ISRO must consider all the risks before entering into PPPs and include watertight provisions into its contracts so as to avoid the risks listed above.

Additionally, India clearly lacks a coherent framework for ascertainment of manufacturers’ liability. In this case, India can perhaps take inspiration from National Centre for Space Studies (CNES), the national space agency of France. The French government has enacted the France Space Operations Act (FSOA), 2008 which imposes fault-based liability for damage caused to outer space and could be used to sue the manufacturers directly. There should also be a limit on manufacturers’ liability, except in case of willful misconduct or gross negligence, or else the victims will find it more favourable to bring a claim against them, considering that the license procurer is generally protected with a limited liability provision.

The existing legislations for determining product liability i.e., the Consumer Protection Act and the general tort law, are both inadequate to address claims against space object manufacturers due to the high quantum and specialized nature of these claims. It is also to be noted that space and technology related to it is extremely and inherently complex. Therefore, we need dedicated Tribunals or Committees to solve issues related arising out of this niche area of business. It is recommended that a specialized body, consisting of experts possessing the requisite skills and knowledge, must be set up to adjudicate these issues. For instance, in South Korea, a Space Accident Inquiry Committee has the power to investigate the manufacturers for space accidents. The government can also prescribe a list of experts on Space technology who the parties can prefer to be panelists, should they choose to arbitrate.

Conclusion and Way Forward

The Indian space industry holds immense potential for development and the involvement of the private sector in the sector can result in an immense boom in terms of science & technology, spur in innovation and its contribution towards the economic development of the nation. This collaboration between the public and private sector entities can consequently lead us to overcome the overburdening of ISRO which has slowed down its progress and confined its operations to a certain level. If these partnerships with the private sector are implemented efficiently, we might also attract funding from venture capitalists, foreign investments and collaborations with foreign-based private companies.Privatization of manufacturing facilities will also help India to capture a larger share in the global market.

A considerable number of private companies have taken the initiative to enter this market and establish their own R&D facilities, but in order to fulfill the goal of capturing the global market, a considerably high number of companies need to participate. However, there is a lack of clear legislative or policy framework governing the space industry which is acting as a hindrance in the development of ‘new space’ sector in the country. Private players are hesitant to enter the sector owing to numerous issues like lack of a clarity over regulations, absence of an assured market and risky investments. Further, the lowest cost selection approach adopted in the market, instead of lower total cost of ownership, makes the survival of these companies highly unsustainable. The government along with ISRO must take this opportunity and ensure the private sector that there exists a market for the consumption of its products and services by promoting the supply and demand sides both.

In conclusion, if India wants to be a superpower in the global space industry, the first step to be taken must be creation of a conducive environment for the private participants through suitable legal provisions and setting up a regulatory mechanism. The IN-SPACe is a great start. While DOS has clarified, to some extent, the gamut of duties IN-SPACe is required to perform, a detailed policy or statute is still not in space. The Government of India had drafted theSpace Activities Bill 2017, to address these issues and has clarified that the legislation is aimed at boosting private sector participation in the entire range of space activities. However, this draft was heavily criticized and thus, a new draft is currently tabled and yet to be surfaced. It is hoped that these new laws will help nurture private participation while providing strict regulations and adequately address and clarify important provisions such as ToT arrangements, IP rights, liability and indemnity clauses, taxation laws and insurance arrangements.

About the Authors

Ms. Lavanya Pathak is currently pursuing Master of Corporate Law at University of Cambridge.

Ms. Ananya Vatsa is a 5th Year Law Student at Maharashtra National Law University and is a former Associate Editor at IJPIEL.

Editorial Team

Managing Editor: Naman Anand

Editors-in-Chief: Aakaansha Arya and Akanksha Goel

Senior Editor: Nutan Keswani

Associate Editor: Ananya Vatsa

Junior Editor: Aribba Siddique

Preferred Method of Citation

Lavanya Pathak and Ananya Vatsa “Unlocking ‘New Space’: Ushering in a New Era in the Indian Space Sector” (2 November, 2021)

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