Brussels, 26 Jul 2004
Proposal for a
REGULATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL
on the implementation of the deployment and commercial operating phases of the European programme of satellite radionavigation
1. GALILEO: A STRATEGIC PROGRAMME FOR THE EUROPEAN UNION
The GALILEO programme aims at putting into place a worldwide satellite radionavigation and positioning infrastructure specifically for civil purposes. It has a technological, political and economic dimension. All sectors of the economy and society are affected by the development of satellite radionavigation which, according to all the estimates, is expected to grow and grow. The markets linked to this technology are growing at an annual rate of 25% and some 3 billion receivers should be in service by 2020. The number of jobs created as a result of the GALILEO programme alone should be in the region of 100.000.
Europe's investment in GALILEO and its exploitation also contribute substantially to the implementation of a European space policy and programme, as set out in the White Paper on the future of European Space Policy1 and foreseen in the European Constitutional Treaty2.
Satellite radionavigation fits perfectly in the framework of transport policy as described in the Commission's White Paper3, particularly concerning freight management, tarification of infrastructures and road safety. It has become part and parcel of the daily life of European citizens, featuring not only in their cars and portable telephones but also in their banking habits and the civil protection systems which look after their security; all of which confers on the GALILEO programme an additional citizens' dimension. It is also important to note the European dimension and the added community value of GALILEO, no single Member State having wished to develop such a project alone.
The European Parliament has consistently given its full support to the programme. In its resolution adopted on 29 January 2004, it stressed "the enormous significance of GALILEO for the European Union's industrial, transport, technological and environmental development, and hence at the same time for the achievement of the strategic goals set in Lisbon of making the Union the most competitive and dynamic economic area in the world".
For its part, the Council agreed already in July 1999 that "the development of a satellite navigation system for civil use leads to increased independence in one of the most important key technologies" and that "the development of a satellite navigation system for civil use affords European industry the chance to enhance its competence and to participate in opportunities opened up by this future technology on a large scale". Since then the Council and the European Council have underlined the strategic importance of the programme on many occasions and have asked the Commission to take all the measures necessary to implement it.
The European Economic and Social Committee has also supported the programme. In the conclusions of its report of  June 2004 on progress on the GALILEO programme, it reaffirmed "the fact that the GALILEO project is of major strategic importance to the European Union, to the future of its space industry and to the cause of promoting European integration".
It is included amongst the large infrastructure projects mentioned in the Commission Communication to the European Parliament and the Council of 10 February 20044 entitled "Building our common future Policy challenges and budgetary means of the Enlarged Union ­ 2007-2013". It is also taken up as a priority project in the Growth initiative proposed by the Commission and endorsed by the European Council.
The GALILEO programme has now reached an advanced stage of maturity and goes well beyond the framework of a simple research project. It is necessary to place it on an specific legal tool, better able to satisfy its needs and respond to the requirement for good financial management. As a result, a Community Regulation is necessary to enable the implementation of the deployment and the commercial operating phases of the programme in line with the modalities set up above.