The federal government has announced its commitment to never conduct destructive, direct-ascent anti‑satellite missile testing, consistent with our role as a responsible actor in space.
When carried out, these tests generate large amounts of debris that remain in space for years; threatening satellites and other space objects, and risking the long-term sustainability of human activity in space.
The use of these missiles to destroy space objects is reckless, and irresponsible and poses threats to the space assets of all nations.
Australia joins the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Germany and the Republic of Korea in making this commitment toward a safer, more stable and peaceful space domain.
Space touches every aspect of our lives – from international communications networks to the global economy and military and defence capabilities.
Australia has actively participated in the United Nations Open Ended Working Group on reducing space threats through norms, rules and principles of responsible behaviours.
“Destructive testing of direct-ascent anti-satellite missiles threatens the security of vital systems in space, which Australia and other nations depend on every day. With this pledge, the Government is demonstrating Australia’s commitment to act responsibly to protect our national security interests.” said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence, Hon Richard Marles MP.
“The global community must work together to build a common understanding on rules and norms that can guide how states behave in outer space. This commitment to responsible behaviour, helps build a meaningful framework that contributes to the security, safety and sustainability of outer space.” said Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong.
“Space technologies support critical services that improve national wellbeing and economic prosperity. This commitment is a responsible step to help ensure space assets are protected for the benefit of all Australians.” said Minister for Industry and Science, Hon Ed Husic MP.