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Maybe time to adopt new space law in New Zealand, expert says

 Christchurch – August 6, 2015

New Zealand needs to develop its own domestic space law as more and more companies enter the realm of space for commercial purposes around the world, Christchurch legal space expert Dr Maria Pozza says.

Dr Pozza, an international space law specialist and consultant lawyer on New Zealand law at Helmore Ayers lawyers says the realm of outer space is governed by a series of international multilateral treaties.  The treaties pertain to activities undertaken by nations in outer space and they hold nations accountable for activities which are prohibited under international law.

“New Zealand may well become a hub of smaller satellite activities and commercial enterprise in the very near future given its access and geographical location on the globe. It has been in the news that New Zealand based firm Rocket Lab, with support from United States corporations and NASA, intends to launch from the Birdlings Flat near Christchurch, in the very near future” Dr Pozza says.

“This venture is an excellent case in point.  Similarly, other international corporates such as Space X, S3G, Tyvak, Stras Space or Aenget Inc, to name but a few, are also changing the commercial space environment and enterprise. These are exciting developments for New Zealand.

“But,  while New Zealand is a signatory to the Outer Space Treaty 1967, and the Liability for Damage to Space Assets Convention 1972, it has no other domestic Space Law and  it has yet to develop national law and policy pertaining to activities in outer space even though  New Zealand has substantial interests which are rapidly progressing in this area.”

A member of the International Institute of Space Law, Dr Pozza has been awarded a fellowship from the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law at University of Cambridge. She is also a visiting researcher post at the London Institute of Space Policy and Law within the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London.

Dr Pozza has been awarded the Peace and Disarmament Educations Trust Award, as well as other prestigious awards including the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade Historical Research Grant.  Her expertise has been called upon by a number of international institutions and agencies and presently offers specialist consultancy work in the laws of outer space as well as offering regulated legal services in New Zealand law and International law.

For further information contact Dr Maria Pozza, Helmore Ayers Lawyers consultant lawyer, on 022 3214259 or Make Lemonade media specialist Kip Brook on 0275 030188.


Photo: Dr Maria Pozza



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