CAIRO, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- China's assistance in establishing Egypt's satellite assembly center as well as building a remote sensing satellite helps the country become Africa's pioneer in the space field, said Egypt's space agency chief in a recent interview with Xinhua.
Sherif Sedky, CEO of the Egyptian Space Agency (EgSA), described Egypt's cooperation with China in the field of space technologies as "strategic" and "fruitful."
"Egypt's cooperation with China in the field of space is long-standing, the most important part of which is the establishment of the Satellite Assembly, Integration and Test Center (AITC), the largest of its kind in the Middle East and Africa, in addition to the design and manufacture of the MisrSat II satellite," said the EgSA CEO.
In June, two China-funded prototype satellites of the MisrSat II satellite project were delivered to the Egyptian side, making Egypt the first African country with the capacity to assemble, integrate, and test satellites.
Sedky pointed out that the AITC and the MisrSat II satellite were established via a full grant from China.
MisrSat II, the first satellite Egypt owns through a partnership with China, has been tested in the Arab country by Egyptian and Chinese engineers and will be sent later to China for launch, according to the head of EgSA.
"There are seven basic tests, including those related to the space environment, the simulation of the launching process itself, the electromagnetic coverage, and the payload, all of which have been fully and successfully completed," he told Xinhua, adding that the satellite is currently ready for launch in December.
"The space technology is a large and significant area of cooperation with China, and it has proven very successful," Sedky said.
He explained that MisrSat II is a low-orbit imaging satellite that is meant to serve Egypt's sustainable development goals by photographing agricultural areas, urban development, changes in beaches, water resources, and existing mineral wealth.
The Egyptian-Chinese cooperation in the space field is "very promising," and it has proven successful over the past years, said the Egyptian official.
"We are very happy with our strategic cooperation with China, and we're looking forward to deepening it," Sedky added. ■