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Legal Aspects of Commercial Utilisation of the International Space Station – a German Perspective

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Chapter Summary

This chapter outlines the legal considerations involved in the commercial exploitation and utilisation of the International Space Station (ISS) from a German legal perspective. It demonstrates the sources and content of those rules as they apply to ISS commercial operations in situations where German law is the governing law. The multi-party nature of the ISS leaves scope for the applicability of various national rules of law in specific situations where the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) so provides, whether or not the ISS operations are commercial. Article VI of the Outer Space Treaty (OST) imposes a duty upon states to guarantee authorisation and supervision of space operations and activities at national level, in accordance with treaty law. Achieving legal certainty over proprietary rights and conflicts of laws through the medium of national or European space legislation remains an essential means of encouraging commercial utilisation of the ISS.

Keywords: commercial utilisation; German legal perspective; Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA); International Space Station (ISS); Outer Space Treaty (OST)



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