India can have a $40-100 billion space industry by 2040: Arthur D. Little

Currently valued at $8 billion with a 2% share in the global space economy, India's space market could reach $40 billion by 2040 and claim a $100 billion share of the addressable opportunity in the global space economy

Anu Sharma
Updated26 Jul 2023
The growth will be driven by increased government spending, the entry of private players, and a booming satellite internet market
The growth will be driven by increased government spending, the entry of private players, and a booming satellite internet market(PTI)

New Delhi: India has the potential to develop a $40-$100 billion space industry by 2040 on the back of a rising space budget, increased number of launch services from the country, entry of private players and startups, and a boom in the country's satellite internet market, consultancy firm Arthur D. Little said in its latest report.

Currently, India’s space industry is valued at $8 billion with a 2% share in the global space economy. The government spending on space is around $2 billion and the country has launched 381 foreign satellites since 1999 for 34 countries clocking $279 million in revenues.

Indian Space Research Organisation, which is the world’s sixth largest national space agency, recently launched Chandrayaan-3 on 14 July. This is a follow-on mission to Chandrayaan-2 to demonstrate end-to-end capability in safe landing and roving on the lunar surface.

“India needs to encourage widespread adoption of satellite internet services and capitalize on its existing strengths in satellite and launch vehicle manufacturing. India should develop capabilities in high-potential sectors such as space mining and in-space manufacturing, venture into new space activities like space tourism and space entertainment, and innovate in the realm of green space,” Barnik Chitran Maitra, Managing Partner, Arthur D. Little, India & South Asia said.

Simultaneously, the consultancy firm said that the global space market is projected to reach $1 trillion by 2040 as per various analysts while India's space market is growing at an annual growth rate of 4% in recent years.

“The Indian government aspires for the country's space sector to account for 9% of the global industry by 2030. With its current trajectory, India's space economy could reach $40 billion by 2040. However, India has the potential to claim a much larger share of the global space economy, amounting to $100 billion addressable opportunity by 2040,” Arthur D. Little said.

Indian space startups have received a total funding of over $200 million since 2021 and with ISRO’s plan to set up its own space station by 2030, there is potential for further investments by the private sector, the firm added.

In fact, space tourism is also expected to get a further boost with US spaceflight company Virgin Galactic developing commercial spacecraft and planning to provide suborbital spaceflights to space tourists.

“Space tourism has already begun in a way. Even Virgin has tried it. As early as 2024, you will see some more space tourism companies doing their first set of pilot flights. In the next 12-18 months, there will be a lot of pilots in tourism flights and you will see other companies as well. We believe 2030 is a reasonable estimate for you to have space tourism. It will rarely be a mass product. Right now space tourism tickets are priced at $50,000-$100,000. It will be a fairly premium experience,” Maitra added.

In order to achieve the $100 billion target by 2040, the firm added that India needs to draft and ratify clear and comprehensive regulations for all areas of space, promote foreign investments on satellite establishments, use schemes such as production-linked incentives (PLI) to make India a manufacturing hub for satellites, set up a ‘sandbox’ program under ISRO for early-stage startups, collaborate with international companies under joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, establish dedicated research and development centres for emerging themes in space, and accelerate skill development activities to create a ready workforce.

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HomeIndustryIndia can have a $40-100 billion space industry by 2040: Arthur D. Little

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