BANGALORE, India India will invest in Europe's Galileo project, the satellite positioning and navigation system.
Galileo is being jointly developed by the European Union and the European Space Agency. The project is widely seend as an alternative to the U.S. Global Positioning System.
The EU and India have been in talks for several years on Indian participation in the project. The investment plan was announced in New Delhi on Wednesday (Sept. 7). The Indian government first said it participate in Galileo about two years ago.
“India will be taking equity in the Galileo project, but the extent of the equity it takes will depend on the extent of India’s participation,” said Madhavan Nair of India's Department of Space.
The deal was announced during a visit to India by an EU delegation led by British Prime Minister, Tony Blair.
China and Israel are also funding parts of the project. India's role in the project will be revealed when an agreement is signed during the current visit of the EU delegation.
Galileo will consist of 30 satellites and estimated to cost about $4 billion. It is expected to be operational by 2008.