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PE 441.020v02-00 A7-0165/2011

on the mid-term review of the European satellite navigation programmes: implementation assessment, future challenges and financing perspectives


Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

Rapporteur: Vladimír Remek

 OPINION of the Committee on Foreign Affairs
 OPINION of the Committee on Budgets


on the mid-term review of the European satellite navigation programmes: implementation assessment, future challenges and financing perspectives


The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its resolution of 20 June 2007(1) on the financing of the European programme of satellite radionavigation (Galileo) under the Interinstitutional Agreement of 17 May 2006 and the multiannual financial framework 2007-2013,

–   having regard to Regulation (EC) No 683/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the further implementation of the European satellite navigation programmes (EGNOS and Galileo)(2),

–   having regard to Regulation (EU) No 912/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council, setting up the European GNSS Agency(3),

–   having regard to the Commission’s Communication ‘Action Plan on Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Applications’ (SEC(2010)0717),

–   having regard to the ‘GNSS Market Report’ of the European GNSS Agency (October 2010),

–   having regard to the Commission’s Communication ‘The EU Budget Review’ (COM(2010)0700),

–   having regard to the Commission’s Report ‘Mid-term review of the European satellite radio navigation programmes’ (COM(2011)0005),

–   having regard to Rule 48 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy and the opinions of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Committee on Budgets (A7-0165/2011),

A. whereas the European Parliament has consistently given its full support to the European Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), implemented through the Galileo and EGNOS programmes, aiming at improving the everyday life of European citizens, ensuring Europe’s autonomy and independence, and acquiring a significant share in the worldwide high-tech market dependent on satellite navigation,

B.  whereas the EU is currently dependent on the US Global Positioning System (GPS), with activities worth around 7% of GDP reliant on it,

C. whereas Galileo is expected to offer advantages compared to GPS, such as improved accuracy, global integrity, authentication and guarantee of service, as well as to give the Union strategic autonomy,

D. whereas the global GNSS market is growing exponentially, estimated to reach around EUR 150 billion in 2020, of which less than 20% is generated in the EU,

E.  whereas EGNOS is already used on a daily basis by 80 000 European farmers and was recently certified for civil aviation, and whereas certification for maritime transport is expected to follow in the near future,

F.  whereas Galileo is aiming to become the technologically most advanced, state-of-the-art GNSS in the world, able to set the global standard for the future, involving a high concentration of science, advanced technologies and skilled human resources, contributing to innovation and the competitiveness of EU industry,

G. whereas EGNOS and Galileo will generate EUR 60 billion of indirect benefits to the EU economy and society, in the form of enhanced road and aviation security, reduced air pollution and pesticide consumption, new jobs and public safety, generating very significant value for money compared to other comparable investments,

H. whereas with the building-up of four global and two regional satellite navigation systems by different international actors, speed in making services available is a vital element for Galileo in order for this European system to become, as rapidly as possible, an alternative major GNSS reference system of choice,

I.   whereas the failure of the initial public-private partnership for funding the GNSS programmes led in 2007 to the decision to pursue their implementation with financing drawn exclusively from the Union budget (EUR 3.4 billion for the definition, validation and deployment phases up to 2013), and consequently with full ownership by the European Union, leading to Galileo and EGNOS being the first major EU-owned projects of this type,

J.  whereas Galileo is a civil system under civil control and all its services should comply with international space law, the EU Treaties, and the principles laid down in the UN Charter and Treaties,

K. whereas increased programme costs, due among other things to inaccurate cost forecasts and cost management strategies, mean that the current budget can only fund the deployment of Initial Operating Capacity (IOC), comprising 18 satellites,

L.  whereas, before a decision is made on a further financial commitment from the EU budget in the next multiannual financial framework, a clear assessment of all the possible technical options and related costs and benefits needs to be presented by the Commission,

Mid-term review: assessment of implementation

1.  Welcomes the Commission’s Report, setting out the current situation and future challenges of this important flagship initiative;

2.  Regrets, however, the delay in publishing the mid-term review, for too long creating uncertainty concerning the overall progress of the project and its financial situation, which is detrimental to the market uptake of GNSS applications and to public support;

3.  In order to enhance transparency, calls on the Commission to update the GNSS Strategic Framework (C(2008)8378) in the light of the current situation, including the main actions, estimated budget and timetable necessary to meet the objectives;

4.  Calls on the Commission, with a view to preventing future cost overruns, to put in place stringent cost containment and risk mitigation policies, including those necessary to keep satellite launch costs under control; suggests that the Commission study the findings obtained so far and consider making use of independent experts, including industry representatives, for this purpose, in order significantly to improve the efficiency of project management;

5.  Calls on the Commission to implement recommended risk mitigation measures, such as dual sourcing, in the procurement of all critical work packages in order to be able to keep to the ambitious schedule, taking into account the level of real competition in the relevant markets, as well as the political will to keep launch capability in Europe in the future, as reflected inter alia in the 7th Space Council Resolution of 25 November 2010;

Financial situation

6. Believes that IOC, able to provide initial services based on 18 satellites, should be completed by 2014 at the latest to ensure that Galileo does indeed become the second GNSS constellation of reference for receiver manufacturers; in this respect, urges the Commission as soon as possible to launch the four In-Orbit Validation (IOV) satellites, to establish a clear road-map for the launch of the remaining 14 satellites, and to conclude the final work packages;

7.  Is convinced that the aim of Full Operating Capacity (FOC), based on a constellation of 27 satellites plus a suitable number of spare satellites and adequate ground infrastructure, is a prerequisite to attain the added value of Galileo in terms of authentication, high precision and uninterrupted service and therefore to reap the economic and societal benefits; believes that clear and unambiguous support from all European Institutions to the fulfilment of FOC is needed to convince users and investors of the long-term commitment of the EU; calls on the Commission to send a positive signal to the market to this effect;

8.  Deplores the fact that no proposal has been made to provide additional financing for this programme by readjusting the current multiannual financial framework, which has led to further delays, additional costs and possibly the loss of a ‘window of opportunity’; believes, in that light, that FOC should be reached by 2018 at the latest, which, according to the Commission, is estimated to require additional financing of EUR 1.9 billion and annual funding to cover operating costs of approximately EUR 800 million from 2014 onwards; calls on the Commission to actively pursue all possible financial efficiency savings and to put in place an appropriate financing structure (taking into account, among other things, the revenues from Galileo’s Commercial Service) to limit the necessary additional financing;

9.  Highlights the fact that current EU funding of R&D for GNSS stands at no more than EUR 15 million per year; warns of damage to other R&D programmes if additional funding for these activities is taken out of the current framework programme (FP7); is of the opinion that in the future more funding should be provided under FP8 and through other measures to facilitate the development of GNSS-based products and services;

10. Stresses the need to increase funding with a view to enhancing the development of GNSS applications and services, which is essential in order to ensure that the infrastructure investment which Galileo represents is fully exploited and that the Galileo system is developed to its full capacity;

Public awareness

11. Is strongly convinced that additional funding for GNSS can only be secured if awareness of the benefits for the EU economy and society brought by GNSS is raised considerably among decision-makers and the wider public; applauds the setting-up of concrete initiatives, such as the annual Galileo Masters competition for ideas, for which there were 350 entries from 44 countries in 2010, the Galileo children’s competition and the GNSS innovation prize;

12. Urges the Commission and the EU GNSS Agency (GSA) to put much more effort into raising awareness of GNSS among potential users and investors, promoting the use of GNSS-based services, as well as identifying and concentrating the demand for these services in Europe; stresses, in this context, that Galileo is in the public interest at EU level and thus has a justified claim to financing from public funds;

13. Calls on the Commission and the GSA to approach national authorities and SMEs dealing with space-related technology as potential end-users of GNSS applications, using appropriate calls for tenders, awareness campaigns and technology transfer mechanisms in order to do so, while at the same time stressing the importance of maintaining the European regional balance;

International dimension

14. Calls on the Commission to actively involve regions of the world where the adoption of European GNSS technology and applications may help market development, such as Latin America, South-East Asia or Africa;

15. Supports the Commission in its efforts to ensure the compatibility and interoperability of Galileo with other satellite navigation systems and to strive for global standardisation; in this respect, urges the Commission and Member States to deploy all available means to quickly resolve the current compatibility issues with China;

Future challenges: financing and governance

16. Emphasises the strategic importance of space policy and the GNSS programme in the drive to establish a genuine European industrial policy based on practical projects with tangible benefits for the public and for business; calls, in that respect, on the Commission to recognise the important role that satellite navigation can play and to integrate it in the development of all other relevant Community policies;

17. Points out that long-term stability is important in order to minimise additional delays, costly redesign and destabilisation of the user base; calls, in this respect, on the Commission to quickly submit legislative proposals on the future level of services, financing and governance of the GNSS programmes; believes, furthermore, that it is vital to ensure the retention of relevant know-how and acquired expertise so that the programmes are well managed;

18. Calls on the Commission to include in the impact assessment to be performed in the framework of the upcoming legislative proposal clear and comprehensive information on:

- the technical specifications (accuracy, geographical coverage, integrity, etc.) for the services (Open Services, Safety of Life, Commercial Services, Public Regulated Services) that the various Galileo satellite configurations could provide (including IOC and FOC, used in combination with other GNSS systems or on a stand-alone basis);

- the role of EGNOS services with regard to the various possible Galileo configurations and whether or not EGNOS should be kept in a FOC constellation;

- the costs of the possible Galileo and EGNOS configurations in terms of not just infrastructure investment but also management and contingency costs (including IOC, FOC and other possible options);

19. Considers that Galileo and EGNOS, as European programmes owned by the EU which address a public interest at EU level, should mainly be financed through the EU budget; believes that – alongside the contribution from the EU budget – all possible sources of financing should be investigated, including innovative forms of financing; emphasises that ad hoc, emergency budgetary solutions such as those seen in the past are likely to jeopardise the success and added value of such strategic, large-scale EU projects and undermine the political momentum around them; believes, therefore, that a sound, global and long-term financing solution should be found; suggests that a predetermined annual amount should be provided from the EU budget (for the financing of the remaining Galileo infrastructure as well as the operating costs); points out that the estimated figures included in the mid-term review for the period after 2013 are indicative, and calls on the Commission to present a detailed breakdown of the estimated financial needs by summer 2011, in order to increase the accountability, predictability and transparency of the project;

20. Believes that unexpected additional costs should be financed from the Community budget without endangering other existing programmes; calls, in this respect, on the Commission to assess the possibility of establishing a ‘Galileo reserve fund’ to cover such unexpected costs;

21. Believes that the long-term governance and management structure of GNSS should address the division of tasks and responsibilities between the Commission, the GSA and the European Space Agency (ESA), as well as other relevant issues, such as appropriate cost-sharing, the revenue-sharing mechanism, the liability regime, pricing policy and the possible involvement and contribution of the private sector in the GNSS programmes; calls, in this context, on the Commission to make swift progress with the ongoing reflection on future governance schemes for the operation of the system, to take responsibility for long-term operations and adaptation of the infrastructure, to ensure the delivery of continuous data and services to users, and to maximise opportunities for the development of commercial services;

22. Stresses the importance of any long-term governance and management structure of GNSS being fully transparent, financially sound and accountable and managed in the most responsible manner possible; notes, in this regard, that coordination with the Council and the European Parliament should take place on a regular basis and should include detailed updates;

23. Calls on the Commission to establish appropriate mechanisms to ensure that GNSS based services and applications, both private and public regulated, comply with fundamental citizens’ rights such as privacy and data protection;

24. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the ESA.


OJ C 146E, 12.6.2008, p.226.


OJ L 196, 24.7.2008, p.1.


OJ L 176, 20.10.2010, p.11.


I. Introduction

The EU took an important step with its political decision enshrined in Regulation 683/2008 to put in place an autonomous European Global Satellite Navigation Systems (GNSS) (Galileo and EGNOS) under EU ownership and under EU management. This Communication is a mid-term review of this flagship initiative, assessing the process and implementation so far and launching the debate on its future governance, exploitation and financing.

Galileo – A brief outline

Galileo, together with EGNOS (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service, an augmentation system that improves the accuracy and the reliability of US' Global Positioning System (GPS) information), is the GNSS developed by the EU. When finalized, it is expected to consist of 27 satellites plus a suitable number of spares satellites in an orbit with an altitude of approx. 23,000 km above the surface of the earth, and a worldwide net of approximately 40 ground stations.

Two main reasons have led the EU to the decision of setting up its own global satellite navigation system: Europe’s independence from other global navigation systems and autonomy, and secondly, to get a share in this tremendously growing worldwide high-tech market, which is today to a large extent dominated by the US.

As a second generation satellite navigation system, Galileo will offer several signal enhancements resulting in improved accuracy, more resistance against multi-path reflections and interference and will provide with global integrity and the authentication concept a main differentiator to the GPS and Russia’s Global'naya Navigatsionnaya Sputnikovaya Sistema (GLONASS). Furthermore, unlike GPS and GLONASS, Galileo is designed as a ‘civil system under civil control’, meaning that continuity of service is guaranteed. This last point is quite important if one keeps in mind that today more than 7% of EU GDP (including financial sector, transport, telecommunications, power grids and stock trading systems) is dependent on the availability of GPS. Therefore, a (temporary) limitation or degradation of GPS signals will have tremendous effects on our economy and society, without other independent GNSS systems in place.

The Galileo project is carried out in four phases:

1.  The Definition Phase was completed in 2001 and resulted in the system design and architecture as well as in the definition of the services.

2.  The Development and Validation Phase started in 2002 and should originally run until 2005. Two experimental satellites (GIOVE-A, GIOVE-B) were launched which fulfilled the primary task to securing the frequency filings. In-Orbit Validation (IOV) using four fully-fledged satellites are expected to be launched towards half 2011 and the beginning of 2012.

3.  The Deployment Phase comprises the building up the full Galileo system by launching the complete constellation of 30 satellites, including spares, and building up the ground structure.

4.  The Operational Phase will start after the completion of full operational capability (FOC).

The deployment of the Galileo constellation is procured in accordance with the EU rules on public procurement, aiming at open access and fair competition to create a level-playing field for potential bidders. The procurement has been split into six main work packages, with detailed rules regarding prime contractors and other entities and the percentage of contracts to be awarded to SMEs.

Galileo was intended to be developed as a Public Private Partnership (PPP). PPP negotiations collapsed in spring 2007 and have led to a re-profiling of the Galileo system. The European GNSS Programme is now funded fully by the Union budget with a budget of EUR 3.4 billion until 2014.

Indirect benefits of the programme are estimated to be around EUR 60 billion per year (including the downstream and upstream market and public benefits). GNSS is seen as a disruptive technology (like ICT), with high potential for innovation, the building up of a high-tech knowledge-base and productivity gains in many sectors. Annual growth rates of the market for GNSS-enabled products and services are estimated to be above 10%.

Galileo is owned by the EU. Its public governance and management can be summarised as follows:

· Political oversight is assured by the European Parliament and the Council. A Galileo Inter-institutional Panel has been created to this end.

· The Commission acts as programme manager.

· The EU GNSS Agency (GSA) is assisting the Commission, acts as Accreditation Authority and is responsible for preparing the market and organizing certification.

· The European Space Agency (ESA) is the prime contractor or procurement and design agent.

II. Implementation Assessment

Results so far

The Communication highlights the results achieved so far:

· The EGNOS open service was declared operational in October 2009. EGNOS is now used daily by 80.000 European farmers for high-precision agriculture; soon it will also be used in civil aviation and maritime transport;

· The first 4 contracts for system engineering, operations and the construction and launch of 14 additional Galileo satellites on top of the four satellites initially commissioned by ESA have been awarded (the remaining 2 work packages are to be awarded in the first half of 2011);

· Preparations have been taken for the launch of the first 4 ‘fully featured’ Galileo satellites (IOV satellites), expected to be launched towards mid 2011 / beginning 2012;

· The GNSS Applications Action Plan was adopted in 2010, setting out concrete initiatives to strengthen the downstream market;

· Important steps were taken in putting in place the ground infrastructure, including the setting up of several ground stations inside and outside EU territories;

· Several calls within FP7 with a total value of EUR 120 million have been opened to develop applications and receivers technologies.

The financial picture

The financial picture is less positive. The costs of the IOV validation phase and the launching costs increased substantially. Within the present budget, the Commission expects the Galileo constellation to consist of only 18 satellites (14 + 4 IOV satellites). Thanks to this constellation, the programme could achieve Initial Operational Capability (IOC), which will allow the provision of early service i.e. offering an initial Open Service, Search and Rescue and PRS, but not at their full performance level.

With the provision of early services, user equipments compatible with Galileo could be disseminated and applications broadened. The penetration of Galileo in the GNSS market would be facilitated and the innovative capacity as well as the competitive positioning of European companies strengthened. Finally, achieving IOC will give an important signal to the world that the EU is committed to and capable of putting in place a sophisticated GNSS.

Nevertheless, to fully exploit its advantages Galileo needs to reach Full Operation Capability (FOC). The performance level of a reduced constellation is a first step towards market penetration, but is restrictive and will definitely not be sufficient to achieve Galileo system objectives.

Reaching FOC would require additional investments. Since the Commission did not propose additional financing during the current period of the Multiannual Financial Framework, a higher additional financing will be needed from 2014 onwards than previously assumed. Due to additional costs (e.g. caused by the disruption of the production chain), a total of around EUR 1.9 billion is now estimated by the Commission to be needed to reach FOC. Furthermore, FOC will be delayed by 2-3 years (until around 2019), leading to a substantial loss of indirect benefits.

Cost overruns are a serious problem, but should also be seen in the right perspective: The development, deployment and upgrading of the GPS system cost in total around $ 40 billion. Also, Galileo has a much higher rate of return than any other comparable infrastructural investment (for example, the Trans European Networks have in average a rate of return of around 8%, whereby Galileo's rate of return is estimated to be around 49%).

International activities

With the launch of the first Chinese COMPASS satellite on 2007 we can expect soon a new satellite navigation system in orbit (the fourth global one after GPS, GLONASS and Galileo). India is building up its regional system (IRNSS – Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System) and Japan its Quasi-Zenith System (QZSS). Our competitors have become stronger and we can assume that they are advancing dynamically. In order for Galileo to become the second global GNSS of choice for chip manufacturers, it is crucial to as soon as possible make early services available and to have a long term commitment about the future financing of Galileo.

The main challenge for the international activities of the GNSS Programmes will be to ensure the compatibility and interoperability with Galileo, to access global GNSS-related resources and set worldwide standards, to ensure security of the space segment and network of ground stations, while ensuring a stricter control of sensitive GNSS technologies developed with European funding, to join in an international effort to develop innovative applications and specialised applications of supra-regional interest. An important objective will be to create market opportunities for the European GNSS technology and applications industries.

III. Future Challenges

The mid-term review is also launching the debate on the future governance, exploitation and financing of the GNSS programmes. This is a very important debate that should clarify the EU's intentions and long term commitment in this field.

Operation and exploitation after 2013

A broad and comprehensive debate on political level should take place about the desired level of ambition (resulting in the level of services provided) and the financial resources available (whereby a political choice would need to be made between a purely EU funded programme and one allowing national or private contributions). The result of this debate will impact the policy options for the future governance and management of the GNSS systems.

Important elements for the debate are:

· Costs for the exploitation of EGNOS and Galileo are estimated at around EUR 800 million per year. A long-term commitment to bear these costs will be required to guarantee the long-term stability of EGNOS and Galileo and for the users to maximise their benefits from the services offered.

· Revenues (mainly fees for the highly accurate Commercial Service) are expected to be limited in the near future, rising slowly to around EUR 80 million per year by 2030, meaning that economic self-sustainability of the systems could not be expected soon.

· The clarification of the liability regime for the satellite navigation, with special regard to the EGNOS, has to be speeded up to mitigate the liability risk of service for safety critical applications.

· Intellectual property rights or risk management are also indispensable elements resulting from ownership.

· A more substantial R&D funding is necessary for the development of downstream applications.

Based on the outcome of the above debate, the Commission should launch a comprehensive analysis to obtain a more precise identification of the possible scenarios and means for operation and exploitation after 2013. This includes all commercial aspects of the exploitation as well as the legal, contractual and financing structures of the different exploitation models that will ensure that a stable governance model is put into place.

OPINION of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (8.7.2010)

for the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

on the mid-term review of the European satellite navigation programmes: implementation assessment, future challenges and financing perspectives


Rapporteur: Maria Eleni Koppa


The Committee on Foreign Affairs calls on the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Stresses its support for Galileo, the European global satellite radio-navigation programme, as a useful tool that will strengthen the economic development, security and strategic autonomy of the EU, while recognising that by definition no space policy can be undertaken in isolation from other relevant actors in space;

2.  Notes that the Commission and the European Space Agency (ESA) are engaged in a dialogue and cooperation with providers of other Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), namely the USA, Russia, China, India and Japan, with a view to ensuring the compatibility and, where possible, interoperability of GNSS systems;

3.  Notes the reaction of the Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China to the letter from the President of the Commission on the issue of the frequency bands and calls for a solution that will make the Compass and Galileo systems compatible;

4.  Insists that the provision of Galileo services must be consistent with the principle that Galileo is a civil system under civil control; recognising, nevertheless, its possible military use, underlines that all uses of Galileo must comply with international law, the UN Charter and the EU Treaties;

5.  Calls on the Commission, as programme manager, to establish the necessary criteria for technical safeguards and the specific procedures governing access to the Public Regulated Service, in order to minimise the scope for unauthorised use of Galileo, and also to draw up a monitoring regime for the transfer of sensitive GALILEO-specific items and technology;

6.  Insists that the EU Member States fully recognise the sensitive nature of GNSS, namely the impact on the security of the EU and its citizens and on European GNSS programmes, when considering export-control requests for GNSS-related items from their industries, in particular when these are covered by international export-control regimes, such as the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies;

7.  Reiterates, however, in view of the vast investment from the general budget of the European Union, its position that the Galileo system should be deployable in support of the CFSP/CSDP, including crisis-management operations, and of the implementation of EU solidarity and mutual-assistance clauses; calls, now that the European Framework Cooperation for Security and Defence Research (EFC) between the Commission, the European Defence Agency (EDA) and the ESA has been activated, for this cooperation to be extended to Galileo;

8.  Stresses that under no circumstances should European space policy, which was intended to serve peaceful purposes, contribute to the overall weaponisation of space, and reaffirms its commitment to the principles laid down in the UN Outer Space Treaty, in particular:

     –   the use of outer space for exclusively peaceful purposes;

     –   the promotion of international cooperation in the exploration and use of outer space;

     –   the liability of the launching authority in the event of damage being caused to a third state, as further specified in the UN Convention on International Liability for Damage Caused by Space Objects;

9.  Supports the efforts in the UN to establish rules to govern activities in outer space and further develop the codification of international space law; welcomes, in this respect, the adoption of the EU Code of Conduct for Outer Space Activities, which also takes account of the need for debris reduction and remains open for signing by all non-EU countries; reiterates its call that the Code of Conduct be transformed into a legally binding instrument;

10. Supports the creation of a European Space Situational Awareness capacity as soon as possible in order to protect critical European infrastructure in space; in this context, is fully supportive of the complementary work undertaken by the ESA and the EDA in this area.


Date adopted





Result of final vote







Members present for the final vote

Gabriele Albertini, Robert Atkins, Dominique Baudis, Bastiaan Belder, Frieda Brepoels, Elmar Brok, Arnaud Danjean, Marietta Giannakou, Ana Gomes, Andrzej Grzyb, Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Richard Howitt, Anneli Jäätteenmäki, Nicole Kiil-Nielsen, Maria Eleni Koppa, Vytautas Landsbergis, Krzysztof Lisek, Sabine Lösing, Ulrike Lunacek, Mario Mauro, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Willy Meyer, Andreas Mölzer, Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, Norica Nicolai, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, Justas Vincas Paleckis, Pier Antonio Panzeri, Vincent Peillon, Alojz Peterle, Bernd Posselt, Cristian Dan Preda, Libor Rouček, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, Werner Schulz, Ernst Strasser, Charles Tannock, Zoran Thaler, Kristian Vigenin

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Laima Liucija Andrikienė, Georgios Koumoutsakos, Norbert Neuser, David-Maria Sassoli, György Schöpflin, Indrek Tarand, Traian Ungureanu

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Pat the Cope Gallagher

OPINION of the Committee on Budgets (16.3.2011)

for the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

on the mid-term review of the European satellite radio navigation programmes: implementation assessment, future challenges and financing perspectives


Rapporteur: Edit Herczog


The Committee on Budgets calls on the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Emphasises the strategic importance of space policy – and particularly of the two flagship initiatives, the GMES and GNSS programmes – in the drive to establish a genuine European industrial policy based on practical projects with tangible benefits for the public and for business;

2.  Recalls that the failure of the initial public-private partnership formula for funding the GNSS programmes led in 2007 to the decision to pursue their implementation with financing exclusively from the Union budget; recalls that, in this context and given the lack of available resources in the current MFF, it was decided to increase the ceiling for Heading 1a by EUR 2.4 billion for the 2007-2013 period; points out that again in 2010 the Commission proposed an MFF revision to increase the ceiling for Heading 1a, owing to a shortage of funding for the ITER project;

3.  Emphasises that such ad hoc, emergency solutions are likely to jeopardise the success and added value of strategic, large-scale EU projects and undermine the political momentum around them; considers it preferable to devise a long-term budgetary solution that will provide EU-level funding in keeping with the technical demands of these programmes and with a timetable that ensures their relevance and viability;

4.  Recalls that in the joint statement on the financing of the European GNSS programmes following the relevant agreement of 23 November 2007, Parliament and the Council confirmed that the estimated total amount needed for Full Operational Capability of the GNSS Galileo project is EUR 3 400 million for the 2007-2013 period, and declared that this amount should not be exceeded for the duration of the 2007-2013 financial framework; is convinced, however, that these estimates in the current financial framework are inadequate for bringing an efficient, competitive service into operation and ensuring the necessary technological linkage by 2013; deplores the fact, therefore, that in its January 2011 mid-term review the Commission did not propose any additional funding for the GNSS programmes for the period up to 2013, which may lead to unacceptable delays in their completion; points out that, should extra funds be needed during this period, redeployment from current multiannual programmes cannot be seen as a viable option, and that further reductions under Heading 1a, in particular concerning the 7th Framework Programme, are unacceptable;

5.  Emphasises that GNSS is a critical technology that could revolutionise European transport infrastructure and various market sectors; points out that other, non-European GNSS programmes will come into operation in the medium term and that any delay would thus result in a loss of international competitiveness, in current infrastructure becoming obsolete, in an inability to use technologies and applications under development and in the loss of up to 60% of the expected benefits;

6.  Asks the Commission to inform Parliament as soon as possible should any additional funding needs arise with a view to the timely completion of GNSS, at least presenting an updated financial overview by summer 2011, when the new MFF proposal is submitted;

7.  Stresses that not only is Galileo actually the first major EU-owned project of this type, but it also addresses a requirement that is in the public interest at EU level, thus justifying recourse to public financing; calls on the Commission to improve the management of the project, to ensure that a service involving a constellation of 30 satellites can be competitive and fully operational within the shortest possible period, to avoid uncertainties and to send a positive signal to market players; points out that there may prove to be substantial differences between current investment costs and future running costs; supports, therefore, the proposal that in the future, where large-scale projects such as this are concerned, a predetermined annual amount should be covered from the EU budget and that the Member States should be responsible mainly for financing any additional cost by making available supplementary funding to the EU budget, while identifying under-spent areas of that budget along with other funding sources, including innovative forms of financing, which could help to finance additional needs arising from such large-scale projects;

8.  Invites the Commission to consider the possibility of crediting the revenue from Galileo’s commercial activities to the EU budget;

9.  Asks the Commission to provide it with details of how the annual cost of maintaining Galileo, estimated at EUR 800 million, is to be met once the system is operational;

10. Points out that the estimated figure (EUR 1.9 billion) included in the mid-term review for the period after 2013 is presented as being purely indicative; takes the view that the Commission should therefore set out a medium-term and long-term financing strategy for the GNSS programmes post-2013, including exploring the idea of setting an annual amount for the 2014-2020 period, which would need to cover the completion of the Galileo infrastructure and its maintenance costs up to 2020.


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Result of final vote







Members present for the final vote

Damien Abad, Alexander Alvaro, Reimer Böge, Lajos Bokros, Giovanni Collino, Jean-Luc Dehaene, Isabelle Durant, James Elles, Göran Färm, José Manuel Fernandes, Eider Gardiazábal Rubial, Salvador Garriga Polledo, Jens Geier, Ivars Godmanis, Ingeborg Gräßle, Estelle Grelier, Lucas Hartong, Jiří Havel, Monika Hohlmeier, Sidonia Elżbieta Jędrzejewska, Anne E. Jensen, Jan Kozłowski, Alain Lamassoure, Giovanni La Via, Barbara Matera, Miguel Portas, Vladimír Remek, Dominique Riquet, László Surján, Helga Trüpel, Derek Vaughan, Angelika Werthmann, Jacek Włosowicz

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, Edit Herczog, Paul Rübig, Georgios Stavrakakis

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Marit Paulsen


Date adopted





Result of final vote







Members present for the final vote

Jean-Pierre Audy, Zigmantas Balčytis, Bendt Bendtsen, Jan Březina, Reinhard Bütikofer, Maria Da Graça Carvalho, Giles Chichester, Pilar del Castillo Vera, Lena Ek, Ioan Enciu, Adam Gierek, Robert Goebbels, Fiona Hall, Jacky Hénin, Edit Herczog, Romana Jordan Cizelj, Krišjānis Kariņš, Lena Kolarska-Bobińska, Bogdan Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz, Judith A. Merkies, Jaroslav Paška, Aldo Patriciello, Anni Podimata, Miloslav Ransdorf, Herbert Reul, Amalia Sartori, Francisco Sosa Wagner, Konrad Szymański, Patrizia Toia, Evžen Tošenovský, Ioannis A. Tsoukalas, Claude Turmes, Niki Tzavela, Alejo Vidal-Quadras

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Antonio Cancian, António Fernando Correia De Campos, Francesco De Angelis, Ilda Figueiredo, Matthias Groote, Andrzej Grzyb, Satu Hassi, Yannick Jadot, Silvana Koch-Mehrin, Bernd Lange, Werner Langen, Mario Pirillo, Algirdas Saudargas, Catherine Trautmann

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