SINGAPORE: There will be no satellite launches for Malaysia this year, said French-based leading commercial satellite launch firm Arianespace S.A.
Arianespace managing director for Asean countries Richard Bowles said although the company had planned 12 launches for this year, Malaysia had launched the Measat-3b, the largest Malaysian satellite ever launched three years ago.
Thus, it would not be part of the company’s launch plans this year.
The RM1.1 billion satellite was the third Measat satellite launched by Arianespace after Measat-1 and Measat-2 in 1996.
Speaking at a media conference, Bowles said the digitisation of media had opened up the possibility of internet broadcasting, going beyond established methods to reach viewers.
“Broadcasting companies are having to face the challenge of coping with this rapidly changing method.”
He declined to elaborate whether Arianespace had made any suggestion to Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd, the only Malaysian direct broadcast satellite provider.
Bowles said Arianespace was well prepared for the rapidly changing nature of the satellite market, with an increasing number of customers looking at launching broadband and earth observation satellites into low earth orbits and medium earth orbits.
Arianespace’s order book, at present, stands at RM23.4 billion for 51 launches for 28 customers worldwide.