Port Louis — MAURITIUS' deployment of its satellite in space opens a new historical chapter in technology development in the Indian Ocean island country.
The government is hopeful the facility - Mauritius Imagery and Radiocommunications Satellite (MIR-SAT1) - will serve as a thrust to science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) education and capacity building.
"We are investing in the economy of the future which will be powered by data and connectivity but also by the creativity of our youth," said Deepak Balgobin, Minister of Information Technology, Communication and Innovation.
"New avenues are now open to us and the possibility of space as a new socioeconomic pillar is now more real than ever. This is a momentous achievement and reflects the vision of the Prime Minister, Honourable Pravind Jugnauth, of a knowledge-based economy."
Mauritius deployed the satellite thanks to the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and JAXA KiboCUBE programme.
The primary objective of the mission is to acquire technology, knowledge and skills for further space endeavours as well as capture images of Mauritius.
Mauritius is particularly prone to natural disaster risk and set to benefit greatly from its own satellite technology.
"With eyes from above, the country will gain powerful data and tools to confront challenges such as rising sea levels and managing ocean resources," NOOSA Director, Simonetta Di Pippo, said.
MIR-SAT1 is the third cube satellite deployed through the KiboCUBE programme that enables teams from developing countries to develop and deploy their CubeSats from theInternational Space Station, following Kenya and Guatemala.