The European Commission has signed a contribution agreement with the European Space Agency to build a national Copernicus data centre in the Philippines, the first of its kind in South-East Asia. With €10 million funding from the EU bilateral development cooperation for the Philippines, the EU will support the uptake of Copernicus, its ambitious earth observation programme, strengthening the Philippines’ resilience to natural disasters and climate change adaptation.
European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen said, “The EU’s Global Gateway is promoting the green and digital twin transition across the Indo Pacific and driving sustainable investments. With this new Copernicus centre the Philippine authorities will be better equipped to help people respond to natural disasters and climate change. As always, we make the data available for all actors and scientific use.”
The new Copernicus data centre site will enhance the response capability and with that the resilience of the Philippines to natural and man-made disasters through the strategic use of space data. This will help reducing vulnerability of the people of the Philippines to climate hazards, support climate adaptation, food security, and environmental protection. The primary national partners for the CopPhil programme are the Department of Science and Technology of the government of the Philippines together with the Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA). This programme will be a building block for the future Team Europe Initiative on Digital Transformation and Digitalisation, following a Team Europe approach with possible involvement of Member States.
The Philippines is a pioneer on Copernicus uptake in ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) with the potential for unlocking economic opportunities and scientific benefits at national to regional level. Advanced utilisation of Copernicus data and information services will support better policy definition, improved planning, increased transparency, commitment, and accountability.
The Copernicus Programme offers free, full and open data access, enabling public authorities to act quickly and based on scientific information when it comes to emergency management or environmental protection and opening opportunities for the scientific community and the private sector alike.
The contribution agreement was signed by Mr. Koen Doens, Director General for International Partnerships at the European Commission and Mr Josef Aschbacher, Director General of the European Space Agency, in the presence of Pablito Mendoza Deputy Chief of Mission and Consul General of the Embassy of the Philippines to Belgium and Luxembourg.
Copernicus is the European Union's Earth observation programme, looking at our planet and its environment to benefit all citizens. It offers information services that draw from satellite and in situ Earth Observation data.
The European Commission manages the programme that is implemented in partnership with the Member States, the European Space Agency (ESA), the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), EU Agencies and Mercator Océan International.
This new collaboration takes place in the context of the EU Global Gateway Strategy. The Strategy aims at boosting smart, clean and secure links in digital, energy and transport sectors and to strengthen health, education and research systems across the world.
The European Commission National Copernicus Capacity Support Action Program for the Philippines (CopPhil), with a €10 M budget, supports the establishment and operations of a National Copernicus data centre and will play a significant role in data and services provision and will ensure that data are processed in line with common fundamental values.
The initiative can be scaled up to a regional level or replicated in other regions of the world.
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- 24 sausis 2023
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