Statutory review of space law starts

Published: 17 August 2021

The scheduled three-year review of the operation and effectiveness of the Outer Space and High-altitude Activities Act 2017 begins today, MBIE Deputy Secretary Labour, Science and Enterprise Paul Stocks says.

The Act regulates launches into outer space, launch facilities, high-altitude vehicles and payloads from New Zealand or by New Zealanders overseas. The review is required under the Act and had to take place 3 years after the Act came into force.

“This technical and operational review will assess the performance of the Act against its objectives and consider how it might be improved operationally,” says Paul Stocks.

“The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment is leading the review. It will include assessing whether the licensing and permitting processes in the Act and regulations are effectively and efficiently delivering on the Act’s purposes and how they might be improved operationally.”

Review of the Outer Space and High-altitude Activities Act 2017 - Terms of Reference [PDF, 209 KB]

Separate public consultation on the peaceful, sustainable, responsible uses of space

“A separate public consultation will begin later this year on our space policy settings more broadly. This will include considering the peaceful, sustainable and responsible uses of space and what this means for space activity from New Zealand.

“The government will announce details on the public consultation process for the space policy review, once confirmed, later this year.

“This policy process will consider how to promote the growth of the space sector in New Zealand, in line with New Zealand’s values,” Paul Stocks says.

The global space economy is worth an estimated NZ$647 billion. A 2019 report found the New Zealand space sector contributed $1.69 billion to our national economy and supports 12,000 jobs.

MBIE media contact