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NewSpace and the Commercialization of the Space Industry: Challenges for the Missile Technology Control Regime

NewSpace and the Commercialization of the Space Industry: Challenges for the Missile Technology Control Regime
Publisher: SIPRI
SIPRI, Stockholm:
October, 2022

The changing nature of the space industry—particularly through its NewSpace entrants—is resulting in changes in business practices, and new funding sources and capitalization models, as well as gaps in awareness and understanding of export controls. NewSpace is not only changing the nature of the space industry, but also exacerbating existing missile proliferation risks and posing challenges for the effective implementation of export controls. It therefore requires a coordinated response by the main multilateral missile export control instrument: the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR).

This report identifies developments, trends and possible proliferation scenarios linked to the NewSpace industry that pose possible missile proliferation risks and challenges for MTCR export controls. The report seeks to strengthen the implementation of export controls and related policy instruments through the MTCR and national measures, in order to prevent commercial space industry activities contributing to programmes for missiles and other delivery systems capable of carrying chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

Contents

1. Introduction

2. The NewSpace industry and missile proliferation risks

3. Applying MTCR export controls to the commercial space industry

4. Regulation and awareness in the NewSpace industry

5. Strengthening the MTCR’s efforts to address proliferation risks posed by NewSpace

ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)/EDITORS

Nivedita Raju is a Researcher in SIPRI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Programme.
Kolja Brockmann is a Senior Researcher in the SIPRI Dual-Use and Arms Trade Control programme.