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Preparations are afoot for G20 meetings in Meghalaya’s Shillong which is scheduled to be held on April 17 and 18.

The G20 “space economy leaders meet” will be held in Shillong in which several top space scientists, diplomats and ambassadors of G20 nations are scheduled to attend the event which is jointly organised by the department of space, ministry of external affairs and the Meghalaya government.

“The objective of the 4th Space Economy Leaders Meeting (SELM) India is to create awareness among the wider audience on the significance of space economy and to discuss the discuss the perspectives of the respective G20 countries on space economy,” a senior government official from the department of space said.

“A session on policy perspectives of space economy is also planned wherein there will be curated talks on specific aspects of space economy by think-tanks and experts,” he added.

Moreover, the DoS informed that there will be a session to brief about the plans for the SELM event to be organised at Bengaluru, Karnataka during July 6-7, 2023.

While SELM acknowledges the contribution of new space to the growth of space ‘economy’, he said the need for the new space actors to assume the responsibility of ensuring the long-term sustainability of outer space should not be missed.

Meanwhile, a senior Meghalaya government official said, the delegates would arrive in Shillong on April 16 and the next day the meeting would be held.

The next day the delegates would be taken on a sightseeing visit to the state capital and to Sohra, the wettest place on earth.

At least three Union ministers would be attending the meeting together with the foreign and Indian delegates. Former CEO, NIT Ayog, Amitabh Kant would be Sherpa for the event.

“Union minister of state, department of space, Jitendra Singh, minister of state for finance, Pankaj Choudhury and minister of state external affairs, V Muraleedharan would be attending the meeting along with the other delegates,” member secretary, state council of science technology & environment, Joram Beda said.

“As many as 26 diplomats from different G20 countries would be attending the meeting. Three think tanks from abroad together with 36 Indian Space Research Organization officials and scientists would also attend the meet,” he said.

Beda informed representatives from 14 startups from India from the space sector would also be attending the meeting.

“Five officials from the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre would also be attending this meeting so we expect a full house and would provide our youths a window of opportunity in the space sector,” he said.

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