China says space is the place

With sights set on a 2015 target completion date, the state-owned Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASTC) announced their goal of expanding their aerospace industry.

Currently the agency has four scientific research and production bases, and the new goal is to double that number by building bases in Tianjin, Inner Mongolia and Hainan. (We’ll just have to wait for Google Earth to find that 4th one, I guess.)

The stated goal of CASTC is to penetrate the international commercial satellite and space launch service markets. In 2007, they launched a Nigerian communications satellite, opening the door for Chinese satellite exports.

Through its comprehensive approach, CASTC has launched 43 domestically developed satellites, six spaceships and one lunar probe into orbit.