The European Union us finalizing ratification of the GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) Galileo Agreement signed back in December 2005. The Agreement shall enter into force on Nov. 1, 2013
At the moment, the European Parliament Committee on Industry, Research and Energy approved the text of the agreement and recommends it for ratification. The adoption of the agreement can take place during the European Parliament plenary session on Oct. 8, 2013.
Despite technical difficulties (Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia were not yet members of the EU at the time of the signing of the agreement in 2005, so they have not ratified the agreement), the agreement will enter into force without those countries, but then they will join the agreement later by signing the appropriate protocols.
Experts say Ukraine's participation in the Galileo project will ensure a highly efficient operation of international transport corridors passing through its territory, as well as provide access to high-precision navigation and clock information for a wide range of applications, including science, economy, and national security.
Ukraine and the EU in November are preparing to sign a framework agreement on cooperation in EGNOS project (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service - ground infrastructure of GNSS) that envisions building in Ukraine up to three European RIMS (Ranging and Integrity Monitoring Stations) to support receiving signals from the European GNSS.
Talks on bringing the Ukrainian side to the EGNOS project began back in 2010. It was negotiated that the EU could allocate around 5 million Euros to host and run the RIMS stations.
Galileo is the first joint program of the EU and the European Space Agency (ESA). The program provides for building and launching into orbit 30 satellites, of which 27 are primary satellites, and, three more - backup ones.
The ESA in 2013 put into orbit four satellites that are currently working in test mode. The system is planned to be fully commissioned around 2014-2016. According to estimates, the cost of the entire system will be over 5 billion Euros.
It should be noted that the Russian Federation is also development of its own global satellite navigation system GLONASS, established as an alternative to the American GPS. However, the lifetime of these satellites are noticeably shorter and the system is less accurate.