Officials from the United States and the Republic of Korea (ROK) met in Seoul on December 15 and 16 for the third U.S.-Republic of Korea Civil Space Dialogue. Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Jennifer R. Littlejohn led an interagency U.S. delegation. The ROK delegation was jointly led by Kwon Hyun-joon, Director General for Space and Nuclear Energy Bureau at the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT), and Yun Hyun-soo, Director-General for Bureau of Climate Change, Energy, Environment and Scientific Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).
The Dialogue was first announced in a during a May 2022 visit to Seoul. The two leaders committed to strengthen the U.S.-ROK Alliance across all sectors of space cooperation, including joint research in space exploration. This commitment was reaffirmed during in September 2022, where she and President Yoon discussed the ROK’s decision to join the United States in committing to not conduct destructive direct-ascent anti-satellite missile testing. The ROK also signed the Artemis Accords in 2021, affirming its commitment to the responsible and sustainable use and exploration of space and facilitating further cooperation with United States’ space activities. The new year, 2023, will mark the 70th anniversary of the U.S.-ROK Alliance. Both nations look forward to strengthening the Alliance and further expanding our bilateral space cooperation.
Space officials for the United States and the ROK discussed many aspects of bilateral space cooperation, including the sustainable use of outer space, space policy and governance, commercial space activities, space technology, satellite navigation systems and Earth observation. Officials also discussed cooperation in space exploration and science, including through the Artemis program, International Space Station and Commercial Lunar Payload Services, as well as space activities focused on civil Maritime Domain Awareness. Participants also agreed to hold conversations on commercial cooperation, as part of the continuing Dialogue in the next year.
The U.S. delegation included representatives from the Department of State, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of Commerce, the Naval Research Lab, the National Maritime Intelligence Integration Office, and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The ROK delegation included representatives from MSIT, MOFA, the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy, the Korea Coast Guard, the Korea Meteorological Administration, the Korea Hydrographic and Oceanographic Agency, and the National Institute of Environmental Research.
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