Another milestone for New Zealand space industry

Minister for Economic Development David Parker has welcomed the successful second test rocket launch as another significant milestone in the development of a New Zealand space industry.

“Congratulations to the team at Rocket Lab for the successful launch of their second rocket off the Mahia Peninsula,” Mr Parker says.

“It was great to see the Still Testing rocket make orbit and successfully deploy the payloads on this second test flight.

“This launch and Rocket Lab’s presence in Auckland and on the East Coast demonstrates what New Zealand can offer for those involved in the space industry here and internationally.

“New Zealand is well positioned to support further development of the space industry.  We can provide a large range of launch angles, particularly for putting space objects into low earth orbit.

“Also our new future focused regulatory regime, coupled with our natural advantage of clear skies and seas, and relatively low levels of air traffic make us an attractive location for space activity.

“Ten years ago, under the last Labour Government, Rocket Lab received its first research and development grant.  It’s great to see the progress which has been made since that initial boost, said Mr Parker who visited Mission Control to watch the countdown on Saturday.

“Rocket Lab are a great example of what can be achieved through targeted research and development funding. I’m looking forward to watching Rocket Lab develop further, and also watching New Zealand’s space industry develop.

 “The Government is particularly interested in advancing areas where New Zealand has existing strengths in space-based data applied to agri-technology, hazard management, oceanography and meteorology,” says Mr Parker.

A range of government agencies, led by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), are supporting Rocket Lab’s test launch activities to ensure they are safe and secure.