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China issues white paper on space development

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-12-27 10:17

BEIJING -- China on Tuesday issued a white paper chronicling its space industry since 2011 and setting out major tasks for the next five years.

"China's Space Activities in 2016," is the fourth State Council white paper on space following those issued in 2000, 2006 and 2011.

At a press conference, Wu Yanhua, deputy chief of the National Space Administration, said that China's exploration and utilization of space has exclusively peaceful motives.

China's space industry took off 60 years ago and April 24 was declared National Space Day in 2016 as a focus for pioneering spirit and enthusiasm for innovation, Wu said.

"The white paper sets out our vision of China as a space power, independently researching, innovating, discovering and training specialist personnel," Wu said.

Since 2011, China has taken great steps forward in manned spaceflight, lunar exploration, the BeiDou navigation system and high-resolution earth observation system.

In the next five years, work will go on in the basic nuts and bolts of the space industry, with extensive research breaking new ground in essential technology, the white paper said.

Around 2018, the Chang'e-4 probe make the first soft landing on the far side of the moon.

By 2020, China's first Mars probe will be launched to carry out orbiting and roving exploration, and a BeiDou network consisting of 35 satellites will provide comprehensive navigation services around the world.

China will activate a heavy-lift launch vehicle project in the next five years.

The Chinese government holds that all countries have equal rights to peacefully explore, develop and utilize space and celestial bodies, the white paper said.

Space activities should benefit economic development and social progress, guaranteeing peace, security, and the survival and development of the human race.

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