Following the UK’s vote to leave the European Union, there has been an unanticipated casualty in this. For years, the UK had been investing in the European satellite system which we would be using to replace the American one. Galileo, as the system is known, however, will likely not be available for the UK to use after Brexit. Well, not at least without paying fees which we already kinda do for using the American version. It’s complicated!
As such, in a report via the BBC, the UK Government has set aside £92M for creating a new Sat-Nav system that will be purely a state service.
Initially, the UK Government will be looking to tender research to various contractors for who can provide the best system at the most competitive price. Given, however, that Galileo was going to be a massive improvement on the current GPS system (improving accuracy from meters to centimetres) it is felt that the UK, despite losing out on this new system, could come up with something even better. It is, however, something of a bitter pill that after years of investment, the UK isn’t going to be able to use it. It’s like making payments for a car you’ll never drive!
The use of Galileo is apparently now forming part of the Brexit negotiations. As such, it is hoped that a compromise can be reached. Failing which though, the UK is clearly very interested in developing their own system. Possibly even if the EU does decide to allow the use or not.
Given that the UK has invested a reported £1.2B in the system, it would be a shame to lose out. In fact, a ‘shame’ is something of an understatement!
What do you think? Should the UK look to work out a deal for Galileo? Should they create their own system? – Let us know in the comments!
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