Japan to set up 1 trillion yen fund to stimulate domestic space business

Japan's government has decided to set up a fund of 1 trillion yen, or about 6.6 billion dollars, over 10 years for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA, to boost space-related businesses in the country.

Global competition in space exploration is intensifying, with the private sector, including Elon Musk's spaceX, participating in the field.

The space strategy fund is aimed at achieving the government's goal of doubling the domestic space-related market from about 26 billion to 52 billion dollars in the early 2030s.

The government plans to allocate the funding to companies, universities and other entities to support development of space technology.

With a 10-year window for funding spreading the spending over several fiscal years, the government is trying to encourage the participation of businesses or other sectors through large-scale, long-term aid.

The government is expected to decide on project themes under a space technology strategy that it aims to draw up by the end of the current fiscal year. Based on the themes, JAXA will select suitable applicants for subsidies and other assistance.

The science, economy and related ministries have earmarked a total of nearly 2 billion dollars in the draft supplementary budget for the current fiscal year.