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EARSC and J-spacesystems sign memorandum of understanding

(Brussels, 23 November 2016)

The European Association of Remote Sensing Companies (EARSC) and Japan Space Systems (J-spacesystems), both non-profit organisations, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 23 November 2016 to develop synergies and strengthen cooperation in business, research and technology between Europe and Japan in the utilisation of Earth-observation (EO) technology. The EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation will act as an intermediary support organisation to support activities between the two parties as part of its objective to facilitate EU-Japan industrial cooperation under its Space.Japan project.

Signature of the Memorandum of Understanding by Chetan Pradhan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of EARSC and Yoshiharu Kunogi, J-spacesystems President of the Board of Executives

The memorandum was signed on behalf of EARSC by the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Chetan Pradhan, and J-spacesystems President of the Board of Executives, Yoshiharu Kunogi with the presence of Ms. Yoko Kadoya representing the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation. The brief signing ceremony took place in Brussels, Belgium at an opportune time – the day after the European Commission held the EU Copernicus User Forum Industry Workshop “Internationalisation of European Earth Observation Companies”.

The signing ceremony was attended by Mr. Takashi Omote, Minister of the Japanese Mission of Japan to the European Union in Brussels, and Mr. Pierre Delsaux, Deputy Director-General of DG-Growth, Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, European Commission.
The memorandum serves to provide a framework for understanding and cooperation between the Parties to achieve their common goals regarding development of partnerships and joint events. The Parties also aim to benefit from the sharing of best practices and exchange of experiences, information and technologies relating to EO which are not available in their home locations. The cooperation will be coordinated by EARSC’s Secretary General, Mr. Geoff Sawyer, and JSS’ Director General, Mr. Hisanobu Takayama with additional support from the EU-Japan Centre.

Areas of Cooperation

  • Exchange of information a foster cooperation in the utilisation of EO technologies and applications between Europe and Japan.
  • Organisation of joint meetings/events to build up cooperation between the EU and Japan in relation to EO technologies and applications.
  • Cross-promotion of other mutual opportunities of interest for the both parties.

This above list is not exhaustive and both parties do not exclude cooperation on other issues of mutual interest.

as the first next step in the cooperation between the EU and Japan, JSS has invited EARSC and European EO companies interested to participate to a workshop on Satellite Data Platforms and Applications in Tokyo on 15 February.

European Association of Remote Sensing Association (EARSC)

EARSC is a non-profit organisation aimed to promote the use of Earth-observation (EO) and European companies which offer EO-related products and services. Formed in 1989, the organisation has over 80 member companies from throughout Europe with a secretariat office in Brussels. EARSC is actively involved in coordinating and strengthening the EO chain and promoting the European geo-information industry, and also providing a unified voice on wider European and global issues of importance to the industrial sector.

Japan Space Systems (J-spacesystems)

JSS is a non-profit organisation formed in 2012 after the merger of three public R&D organizations pertaining to space technology and applications – Institute for Unmanned Space Experiment Free Flyer (USEF), Japan Resources Observation System and Space Utilization Organization (JAROS) and Earth Remote Sensing Data Analysis Center (ERSDAC). JSS conducts space projects involving satellite systems, launch systems, ground facilities for satellite operations, satellite remote sensing technologies and space environment utilization. Recently, the organisation has launched Space Business Court, an online information and business support platform to promote new business development in commercial space, focusing on Earth-observation downstream applications.

Note to Editors:
For more information, please contact Mr. Geoff Sawyer, Secretary General EARSC ( or Mr. Hisanobu Takayama, Director General JSS (

From left to right: Pierre Delsaux, Deputy DG DG-GROW, Chetan Pradhan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of EARSC, Yoshiharu Kunogi, J-spacesystems President of the Board of Executives, and Takashi Omote, Minister of the Japanese Mission of Japan to the European Union in Brussels

Group Picture