ISRO earns over $279 M from foreign satellite launches
In a response to the Lok Sabha, Union Minister of Science and Technology, Jitendra Singh, said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has earned approximately $279 million from carrying foreign satellites on Indian rocket launches.
"Total foreign exchange revenue earned through launching of foreign satellites amounts to USD 56 million and 220 million Euros approximately," he wrote.
At current exchange rates, 220 million Euros is equivalent to around $223 million.
The minister said that ISRO had so far launched 345 foreign satellites from 34 countries on the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). PSLV is ISRO's workhorse rocket used for most launches, including the latest launches in June, which took three Singaporean satellites.
PSLV-C53, which took off on June 30, was a "dedicated international customer mission", according to Jitendra's response. It represented the second commercial launch organised by New Space India Limited (NSIL), ISRO's commercial arm formed in 2019.
Earlier this week, the NSIL chairman had said that the organisation planned to hire personnel for 26 positions across the engineering and financial functions, as soon as possible, as NSIL hopes to ramp up commercial space activities.