United Nations

A/RES/49/34


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

9 December 1994

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



                                              A/RES/49/34
                                              83rd plenary meeting
                                              9 December 1994
 
                 49/34. International cooperation in the peaceful uses of
                        outer space, including the question of the review of
                        the Agreement Governing the Activities of States on
                        the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies
 
      The General Assembly,
 
      Recalling its resolution 48/39 of 10 December 1993,
 
      Deeply convinced of the common interest of mankind in promoting the
exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes and in continuing
efforts to extend to all States the benefits derived therefrom, and also of
the importance of international cooperation in this field, for which the
United Nations should continue to provide a focal point,
 
      Reaffirming the importance of international cooperation in developing
the rule of law, including the relevant norms of space law and their important
role in international cooperation for the exploration and use of outer space
for peaceful purposes,
 
      Concerned about the possibility of an arms race in outer space,
 
      Recognizing that all States, in particular those with major space
capabilities, should contribute actively to the goal of preventing an arms
race in outer space as an essential condition for the promotion of
international cooperation in the exploration and use of outer space for
peaceful purposes,
 
      Considering that space debris is an issue of concern to all nations,
 
      Noting the progress achieved in the further development of peaceful
space exploration and application as well as in various national and
cooperative space projects, which contribute to international cooperation, and
the importance of further international cooperation in this field,
 
      Taking note of the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation
of the recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the
Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space,
 
      Having considered the report of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of
Outer Space on the work of its thirty-seventh session,
 
      1.    Endorses the report of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer
Space;
 
      2.    Invites States that have not yet become parties to the
international treaties governing the uses of outer space to give consideration
to ratifying or acceding to those treaties;
 
      3.    Notes that, at its thirty-third session, the Legal Subcommittee of
the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, in its working groups,
continued its work as mandated by the General Assembly in its resolution
48/39;
 
      4.    Endorses the recommendations of the Committee that the Legal
Subcommittee, at its thirty-fourth session, taking into account the concerns
of all countries, particularly those of developing countries, should:
 
      (a)   Continue its consideration of the question of early review and
possible revision of the Principles Relevant to the Use of Nuclear Power
Sources in Outer Space;
 
      (b)   Continue, through its working group, its consideration of matters
relating to the definition and delimitation of outer space and to the
character and utilization of the geostationary orbit, including consideration
of ways and means to ensure the rational and equitable use of the
geostationary orbit without prejudice to the role of the International
Telecommunication Union;
 
      (c)   Continue, through its working group, its consideration of the
legal aspects related to the application of the principle that the exploration
and utilization of outer space should be carried out for the benefit and in
the interests of all States, taking into particular account the needs of
developing countries;
 
      5.    Also endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the Legal
Subcommittee, at its thirty-fourth session, should suspend consideration in
its working group of the Principles Relevant to the Use of Nuclear Power
Sources in Outer Space pending the results of the work in the Scientific and
Technical Subcommittee, without prejudice to the possibility of reconvening
its working group on that item, if in the opinion of the Legal Subcommittee
sufficient progress was made in the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee at
its session in 1995 to warrant the reconvening of the working group;
 
      6.    Notes that deliberations on the question of the geostationary
orbit have been undertaken by the Legal Subcommittee as reflected in its
report, on the basis of recent proposals which might provide a new and
enhanced basis for future work;
 
      7.    Endorses the recommendations and agreements concerning the
organization of work in the Legal Subcommittee;
 
      8.    Also endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the
Chairman of the Legal Subcommittee should, at its thirty-fourth session,
conduct extensive, open- ended informal consultations with all members of the
Subcommittee on the working methods and agenda of the Legal Subcommittee,
including the consideration of possible additional items for inclusion on the
agenda as outlined in the report of the Committee;
 
      9.    Notes that the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of the
Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, at its thirty-first session,
continued its work as mandated by the General Assembly in its resolution
48/39;
 
      10.   Welcomes the decision of the Committee to consider the matter of
space debris, and the addition of a new item, entitled "Space debris", on the
agenda of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee;
 
      11.   Notes that under that item the Scientific and Technical
Subcommittee considered scientific research relating to space debris,
including relevant studies, mathematical modelling and other analytical work
on the characterization of the space debris environment;
 
      12.   Endorses the agreement of the Committee that, at its thirty-second
session, the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee should focus its attention
on the acquisition and understanding of data on the characteristics of the
space debris environment, and that the Subcommittee should also at its
thirty-second session develop a continuing, deliberate, specific multi-year
plan for its work on this agenda item;
 
      13.   Also endorses the recommendations of the Committee that the
Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its thirty-second session, taking
into account the concerns of all countries, particularly those of developing
countries, should:
 
      (a)   Consider the following items on a priority basis:
 
      (i)   United Nations Programme on Space Applications and the
            coordination of space activities within the United Nations system;
 
      (ii)  Implementation of the recommendations of the Second United Nations
            Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space;
 
      (iii) Matters relating to remote sensing of the Earth by satellites,
            including, inter alia, applications for developing countries;
 
      (iv)  Use of nuclear power sources in outer space;
 
      (v)   Space debris;
 
      (b)   Consider the following items:
 
      (i)   Questions relating to space transportation systems and their
            implications for future activities in space;
 
      (ii)  Examination of the physical nature and technical attributes of the
            geostationary orbit and of its utilization and applications,
            including, inter alia, in the field of space communications, as
            well as other questions relating to space communications
            developments, taking particular account of the needs and interests
            of developing countries;
 
      (iii) Matters relating to life sciences, including space medicine;
 
      (iv)  Progress in national and international space activities related to
            the Earth's environment, in particular progress in the
            geosphere-biosphere (global change) programme;
 
      (v)   Matters relating to planetary exploration;
 
      (vi)  Matters relating to astronomy;
 
      (vii) The theme fixed for special attention at the 1995 session of the
            Scientific and Technical Subcommittee:  "Application of space
            technology for education, with particular emphasis on its use in
            developing countries"; the Committee on Space Research and the
            International Astronautical Federation, in liaison with Member
            States, should be invited to arrange a symposium, with as wide a
            participation as possible, to be held during the first week of the
            Subcommittee's session, to complement discussions within the
            Subcommittee on the special theme;
 
      14.   Considers, in the context of paragraph 13 (a) (ii) above, that it
is particularly urgent to implement the following recommendations:
 
      (a)   All countries should have the opportunity to use the techniques
resulting from medical studies in space;
 
      (b)   Data banks at the national and regional levels should be
strengthened and expanded and an international space information service
should be established to function as a centre of coordination;
 
      (c)   The United Nations should support the creation of adequate
training centres at the regional level, linked, whenever possible, to
institutions implementing space programmes; necessary funding for the
development of such centres should be made available through financial
institutions;
 
      (d)   The United Nations should organize a fellowship programme through
which selected graduates or postgraduates from developing countries should get
in- depth, long-term exposure to space technology or applications; it is also
desirable to encourage the availability of opportunities for such exposure on
other bilateral or multilateral bases outside the United Nations system;
 
      15.   Endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the Scientific
and Technical Subcommittee should reconvene, at its thirty-second session, the
Working Group of the Whole to Evaluate the Implementation of the
Recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the Exploration and
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, to continue its work;
 
      16.   Also endorses the recommendations of the Working Group of the
Whole of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, as endorsed by the
Committee and as contained in the report of the Working Group of the Whole;
 
      17.   Decides that, during the thirty-second session of the Scientific
and Technical Subcommittee, the Working Group on the Use of Nuclear Power
Sources in Outer Space should be reconvened, and invites Member States to
report to the Secretary-General on a regular basis with regard to national and
international research concerning the safety of nuclear-powered satellites;
 
      18.   Endorses the United Nations Programme on Space Applications for
1995, as proposed to the Committee by the Expert on Space Applications;
 
      19.   Emphasizes the urgency and importance of implementing fully the
recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the Exploration and
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space;
 
      20.   Reaffirms its approval of the recommendation of the Conference
regarding the establishment and strengthening of regional mechanisms of
cooperation and their promotion and creation through the United Nations
system;
 
      21.   Expresses its appreciation to all Governments that have made or
expressed their intention to make contributions towards carrying out the
recommendations of the Conference;
 
      22.   Invites all Governments to take effective action for the
implementation of the recommendations of the Conference;
 
      23.   Requests all organs, organizations and bodies of the United
Nations system and other intergovernmental organizations working in the field
of outer space or on space-related matters to cooperate in the implementation
of the recommendations of the Conference;
 
      24.   Invites the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly at
its fiftieth session on the implementation of the recommendations of the
Conference;
 
      25.   Notes that, pursuant to its request in paragraph 22 of resolution
48/39, the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its thirty-first session,
discussed the possibility of holding a third United Nations Conference on the
Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space and that the Committee continued
these discussions at its thirty-seventh session with a view to promoting an
early conclusion on the matter by the Committee;
 
      26.   Agrees that a third United Nations Conference on the Exploration
and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space could be convened in the near future, and
also agrees that, prior to recommending a date for the conference, there
should be a consensus recommendation on the agenda, venue and funding of the
conference;
 
      27.   Recommends that the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its
thirty- second session, conduct a thorough analysis and define an agenda for
such a conference, and agrees that the Subcommittee should discuss a broad
range of themes and subjects that could be refined into a sharply focused and
detailed agenda and should also continue its examination of other means of
achieving the goals set for such a conference;
 
      28.   Invites interested Member States to submit additional ideas and
proposals for a third United Nations Conference on the Exploration and
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space in time for their consideration at the
thirty-second session of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, and
endorses the Committee's request that the Secretariat compile a document, in
time for consideration at the thirty-second session of the Subcommittee,
containing the various ideas regarding the agenda and organization for the
conference submitted to the Committee;
 
      29.   Agrees that the discussions to be held by the Scientific and
Technical Subcommittee should provide the basis for a prompt decision by the
Committee on a recommendation to the General Assembly regarding the agenda,
timing, funding and organization of such a conference;
 
      30.   Recognizes the contribution of the First Asia-Pacific Conference
on Multilateral Cooperation in Space Technology and Applications, held at
Bangkok in 1994, the Ministerial Conference on Space Application for
Development, held at Beijing in 1994, and the second session of the regional
Asia-Pacific Space Agency Forum, held at Tokyo in 1994, towards promoting
regional cooperation in space activities, as well as the meetings mentioned in
paragraph 13 of the report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of
the recommendations of the Second United Nations Conference on the Exploration
and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space; and calls upon the regional commissions to
support those initiatives;
 
      31.   Recommends that more attention be paid to all aspects related to
the protection and the preservation of the outer space environment, especially
those potentially affecting the Earth's environment;
 
      32.   Considers that it is essential that Member States pay more
attention to the problem of collisions of space objects, including nuclear
power sources, with space debris, and other aspects of space debris, calls for
the continuation of national research on this question, for the development of
improved technology for the monitoring of space debris and for the compilation
and dissemination of data on space debris, and also considers that, to the
extent possible, information thereon should be provided to the Scientific and
Technical Subcommittee;
 
      33.   Takes note with interest of the analytical report prepared by the
Secretariat  containing updated information on the implementation of Agenda 21
by the United Nations system, information on activities of the Programme on
Space Applications related to environment and development, and suggestions as
to how the activities of the Programme on Space Applications in this area
might be expanded;
 
      34.   Endorses the agreement of the Committee that it would request the
Commission on Sustainable Development to bring to the attention of its members
the valuable role of space technology and applications in implementing
sustainable development programmes;
 
      35.   Urges all States, in particular those with major space
capabilities, to contribute actively to the goal of preventing an arms race in
outer space as an essential condition for the promotion of international
cooperation in the exploration and uses of outer space for peaceful purposes;
 
      36.   Emphasizes the need to increase the benefits of space technology
and its applications and to contribute to an orderly growth of space
activities favourable to the socio-economic advancement of humanity, in
particular that of the people of the developing countries;
 
      37.   Takes note of the views expressed during the thirty-seventh
session of the Committee and during the forty-ninth session of the General
Assembly concerning ways and means of maintaining outer space for peaceful
purposes;
 
      38.   Requests the Committee to continue to consider, as a matter of
priority, ways and means of maintaining outer space for peaceful purposes and
to report thereon to the General Assembly at its fiftieth session;
 
      39.   Also requests the Committee to continue to consider at its
thirty-eighth session its agenda item entitled "Spin-off benefits of space
technology:  review of current status";
 
      40.   Requests the specialized agencies and other international
organizations to continue and, where appropriate, enhance their cooperation
with the Committee and to provide it with progress reports on their work
relating to the peaceful uses of outer space;
 
      41.   Welcomes the report of the Secretary-General on international
cooperation in space activities for enhancing security in the post-cold-war
era and calls upon the competent bodies to take into account its contents;
 
      42.   Takes note of the recommendation of the Committee that the General
Assembly, at its current session, in considering whether to revise the
Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial
Bodies, should take no action at the present time;
 
      43.   Requests the Committee to continue its work, in accordance with
the present resolution, to consider, as appropriate, new projects in outer
space activities and to submit a report to the General Assembly at its
fiftieth session, including its views on which subjects should be studied in
the future.