By adopting the law, the Grand Duchy has become the first European country to enable private operators to be confident about their rights on resources they extract in space.

The law, which will come into force on 1 August 2017, states that space resources are capable of being owned.

It also outlines the procedures to be followed in authorizing and supervising space exploration missions.

Luxembourg Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of the Economy Étienne Schneider said: “Luxembourg is the first adopter in Europe of a legal and regulatory framework recognizing that space resources are capable of being owned by private companies. The Grand Duchy thus reinforces its position as a European hub for the exploration and use of space resources.”

Under the initiative, the Luxembourg government supports the long-term economic development of new, innovative activities in the space industry.

 The new legal and regulatory framework forms an important action of an overall strategy to be implemented by the Luxembourg government within the initiative.

Schneider said: “The legal framework is part of the expertise ecosystem and the business-friendly, innovation-nurturing environment that Luxembourg is offering to space industry companies. By adopting almost unanimously the respective draft law, the Luxembourg Parliament confirmed the strong political cross-party and national commitment to the initiative.”

Luxembourg is also supporting research and development projects initiated by some of major players in the space mining industry that have already set up their European operations in the country.

Besides, the country continues to promote international cooperation for a global regulatory framework of space resources utilization.

Image: The new law will be effective from 1 August 2017. Photo courtesy of mapichai/