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Astrium’s Beranger named chairman of ESOA

Astrium Services CEO Eric Beranger has been named as the new chairman of the European Satellite Operators Associations (ESOA), succeeding Christodoulos Protopapas, CEO of HellasSat. Cato Halsaa, CEO of Telenor, has also been elected vice-chairman of the board. Both appointments are for one-year.

“I am very proud to take on the responsibility of leading ESOA for the coming year following the excellent leadership provided by Christodoulos in 2010,” said Beranger. “Satellite operators find themselves in an evolving political and regulatory environment with elements such as the preparation of the EU’s Space Policy or the implementation of the Digital Agenda for Europe. It is our responsibility to ensure that policy-makers really understand the advantages that satellites and their services have in terms of bringing information to people all over the world, especially where other communications means either cannot reach or may have collapsed, for instance, due to disaster. We must also make sure they have a clear understanding of the obstacles we face in trying to do this as ultimately the achievement of key public sector goals and the future of Europe’s strategic space sector is at stake.”

ESOA said its priorities for 2011 are to ensure that satellite communications are appropriately recognised in the upcoming EU Space Policy Program, that they are duly supported by EU institutions in making their contribution to ensuring 100% broadband coverage of the EU territory in support of the Digital Agenda for Europe and that satellite operators secure access to key spectrum needed for future growth at next year’s World Radio Conference in Geneva.