Japanese Space Enterprise: The Problem of Autonomous Development

TitleJapanese Space Enterprise: The Problem of Autonomous Development
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1991
AuthorsWray, WD
JournalPacific Affairs
Volume64
Pagination463-488
ISBN Number0030-851X
KeywordsAerospace industry, article, Commercial space ventures, D, development, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, Japan, R&amp, Research &amp, Space, Space exploration
Abstract

For over two decades Japan has been following a low-profile, but increasingly effective, policy for its space enterprise, developing satellites, rockets, and technologies for international projects. The U.S. has recently come to oppose these policies as barriers to imports. However, a 1989 agreement, under which Japan will purchase satellites for commercial use on the open market, reflects not only U.S. pressure but also fiscal difficulties that Japan has experienced in funding a whole range of projects. Some likely effects of this agreement are reliance on consortium arrangements among Japanese satellite manufacturers and greater stress on strategies of international collaboration. The agreement also reduces the potential domestic market for Japan's H-2 rocket, presently being developed, creating more pressure on the rocket industry to diversify its market through international commercial bids. This commercialization policy is likely to be opposed by the U.S., even though the U.S. itself seeks Japanese funding for international space projects.