New Zealand Space Agency Signs Artemis Accords, Becomes 11th Country to Sign On to Lunar Mission

By  //  June 1, 2021

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Dr. Peter Crabtree, head of the New Zealand Space Agency, left, and Charge d’Affaires Kevin Cover of the U.S. Embassy in New Zealand pose following an Artemis Accords signing ceremony in Wellington, New Zealand, May 31, 2021. (NASA Image)

(NASA) – New Zealand has joined a growing list of countries to sign the Artemis Accords. Dr. Peter Crabtree, head of the New Zealand Space Agency, signed the document during a ceremony May 31 in Wellington.

New Zealand is the second nation to sign the Artemis Accords under the Biden-Harris Administration, following the Republic of Korea’s signature May 24.

“New Zealand, along with seven other nations, helped craft the principles espoused in the Artemis Accords. These simple, universal principles will enable the next generation of international partnerships for the exploration of the Moon and beyond,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. “The Artemis Accords belong to our partners as much they do to us.”

New Zealand was one of the countries that contributed to the development of the Artemis Accords, which establish a practical set of principles to guide space exploration cooperation among nations participating in the NASA’s 21st century lunar exploration plans. It is the 11th country to sign the Artemis Accords, joining Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the Republic of Korea, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, and the United States.

“New Zealand’s participation in the Artemis Accords is an historic moment for our nation and our highly-regarded local space industry,” said New Zealand Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash. “Space exploration increases our knowledge of our planet and universe, encourages research, science and innovation, and New Zealand is proud to become a partner in the Artemis Accords.”

NASA, in coordination with the U.S. Department of State, announced the establishment of the Artemis Accords in 2020.

The Artemis Accords reinforce and implement the 1967 Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, otherwise known as the Outer Space Treaty. They also reinforce the commitment by the United States and partner nations to the Registration Convention, the Agreement on the Rescue of Astronauts, and other norms of behavior that NASA and its partners have supported, including the public release of scientific data.

Additional countries will join the Artemis Accords in the months and years ahead, as NASA continues to work with its international partners to establish a safe, peaceful, and prosperous future in space.

Working with emerging space agencies, as well as existing partners and well-established space agencies, will add new energy and capabilities to ensure the entire world can benefit from our journey of exploration and discovery.

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