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Canada's space industry faces challenges penetrating global markets: study

MONTREAL - A new study says Canada has experienced a small bounce in its space competitiveness and retains a skilled workforce but is still facing future challenges.

It's one of the observations made by U.S.-based space forecaster Futron Corporation in its 2014 space competitiveness index.

A Futron official says Canada still hasn't penetrated international markets to the extent it could, even though it has a reputation as a country that is easy to work with.

Futron also questions whether increased levels of funding for Canada's RADARSAT Constellation Mission are sustainable.

The final development costs for the Canadian Space Agency-led project have already jumped to more than $1 billion from $600 million.

An official at the space agency says there will be no response to the report.

The $1 billion includes a $706-million contract that was signed with Macdonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (TSX:MDA) in January 2013 to build the three satellites, launch them in 2018 and operate them for the first year.

Futron Corporation collects data for the 15 leading space industry players, including Canada.

The Canadian Press

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