Post Tue Jul 19, 2011 9:48 am

Romania becomes the 19th member of the ESA

On 20th of January 2011 Romania became officially the 19th member of the European Space Agency by signing the agreement of the ESA’s convention.
The accord has been signed in Bucharest by M.I. Piso the director of the Romanian Space Agency, T. Baconschi the Foreign Affairs Minister and by J.J. Dordain for ESA.
This document marks the official acceding after in November 2010 at the conference of the European ministers it has been agreed the acceptance of Romanian candidature.
In February 2011 Romania ended the 5 years of preliminary collaboration with ESA as per the PECS agreement signed in February 2006.
The previous ESA membership has been signed in July 2008 when Czech Republic became the first East-European country to be part of ESA. On the waiting list there are Hungary, Poland and Slovenia.
Established in 1975, ESA had a budget of 3.74 billions euros for 2010- the biggest contributors being France (18.2%), Germany (16.7%) and Italy (9.9%).
The financial contribution of Romania will be some millions euros per year (most probably 5), money which will return to the national industry and to the Romanian companies as contracts.
ESA, with the headquarter in Paris, has several centers distributed across Europe: ESTEC-European Space Research and Technology Centre (Holland), ESRIN-ESA Centre for Earth Observation (Italy), ESOC-European Space Operations Centre (Germany), ESAC-European Space Astronomy Centre (Spain) sau EAC-European Astronaut Centre (Germany).