New Frontiers? China – Latin America Space Cooperation

China's engagement with Latin America on satellites, space launch, and space technology is limited, but expanding rapidly, following the logic that China has followed in other strategically important sectors of incrementally building relationships, and leveraging initial opportunities to develop and prove capabilities. This article analyzes China's expanding relationship with Latin America in the arena in terms of four countries: (1) those with limited space capabilities not actively pursuing space programs, with whom the PRC has few space-related ties, (2) populist regimes such as Venezuela and Bolivia purchasing complete packages of PRC satellite systems and launch services, (3) other countries developing space capabilities, where China has sought to be a service provider or technology partner, including Argentina, Chile, Mexico, and Peru, and (4) Brazil as an emerging regional power with a multidimensional space program, which has cooperated with the PRC in both satellite development and launch through the CBERS program. In general, by leveraging business opportunities with Brazil and populist regimes of the region, the PRC is gaining a foothold in the commercial satellite and launch services market, with Chinese equipment, personnel, and space systems becoming part of Latin America's infrastructure, with significant implications for the US and the region.

File Type: pdf
Categories: SDSR
Author: R. Evan Ellis

Twitter feed is not available at the moment.