Catalan digital policy minister Jordi Puignero has announced the Catalan government will spend €2.5m on the region’s own space agency.

It comes after the region has already spent €18m to launch six communications satellites.

The project aims to ‘democratise space’, according to the minister. ‘Space is like international waters,’ he claimed.

The development aims to create 1,200 new jobs in Catalunya and generate a €300m income in just four years.

According to the Catalan government, satellites are required for advances in 5G and to monitor issues such as forest fires.

New nano-satellites cost from €500,000 to €2m to manufacture and only last four years before gravity plunges them back down to earth.

Ministers said science and technology advances in the area ‘improve people’s well-being’ and ‘open new economic opportunities’.

Barcelona has been dubbed the second most innovative city in the world in a recent study.

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