Sri Lanka will open a space academy to train astronauts next year.
The academy will be launched as a joint venture between Supreme Satellite Pvt limited, Colombo and China’s biggest satellite manufacturing institution, Great Wall Corporation (CGWIC).
A 30 acre land has been demarcated in Koggala and applications to select students would be called soon, SupremeSAT Managing Director R.M. Manivannan said.
The company will invest US $ 20 million for the project which comes under the BOI. US $ 10 million would be invested this year, he said.
We will build a satellite ground station in Koggala to oversee our satellite operations, he added.
He said they have co-branded satellites with the Chinese company. The facility could be used by other countries in the region.
The programme will save money being paid by local companies to foreign satellite operators and bring in foreign exchange to Sri Lanka, he said.
He said the support he received for the project from the Government, BOI and the Telecommunication Regulatory Commission was encouraging and was a great motivation.
It has been decided to offer the satellite service free to the Disaster Management Ministry so that they could predict natural disasters in advance, he said.