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In the News

Awareness Campaign Launched on Azerspace-1 Satellite


January 28, 2013

U.S. Azeris Network (USAN) launched a campaign to raise awareness about the successful project of Azerspace-1, the first Azerbaijani satellite to be launched in February 2013. 

Members of Azerbaijani-American community will send the letter prepared by USAN to U.S. legislators and media to inform them about enhancement of bilateral trade between the United States and Azerbaijan, including in non-oil sectors such as aviation, satellite, telecommunications, real estate, gold mining, financial services and equity investments and ask the lawmakers to facilitate these developments and encourage the mutually beneficial relations.

Built by the Virginia-based Orbital Sciences Corp. in the United States, the Azerspace-1 satellite has been a success story and has already been delivered to the launch site, where it will be launched on February 8 into space. 

Azerbaijan signed a contract with Orbital Sciences Corporation to design, build, and deliver its first communications satellite in June 2010. This contract is worth $230 million, and created 1,500 new American jobs, most of them in Virginia. 

According to a January 2012 report by the Aerospace Industries Association, the U.S. share of the global satellite manufacturing market has dropped from 65 percent to as low as 30 percent since 1999. The report says U.S. companies lost $21 billion between 1999 and 2009 due to the export regime at a cost of 9,000 jobs annually. Now this is changing, and the Azerbaijani satellite is a trailblazer.

The Azerspace-1 satellite will offer telecommunication services to Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia and North Africa, providing digital broadcasting, Internet access, data transmission, creation of VSAT multiservice networks and communications. 

Some 20% of the satellite`s resources will be used for Azerbaijan`s needs, and the remaining 80% will be available for commercial purposes, including for U.S. government and private customers, such as in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Central Asia. 

After launching Azerspace-1, all of the territory of Azerbaijan, including its Nakhchivan exclave and Karabakh region, will be covered with quality TV and radio broadcasting, high-speed IP services, enabling a stable and quality platform for programs such as distance education and e-health, eliminating communication problems.

Bilateral trade is increasing: in 2010, Azerbaijan signed a contract with Boeing – worth US$1 billion – for the purchase of eight civilian airplanes. According to the New York Times, a US$1 billion contract with Boeing will help support more than 11,000 American jobs across the United States. 

Azerbaijan also intends to launch its second satellite into the orbit in 2015, followed by a third telecommunication satellite in 2016. So there are still ample opportunities for more U.S. companies and states to sign lucrative contracts on designing, building and delivering these satellites as well as other products and services.

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