Paksat-1R launch in China this week | Pakistan | News | Newspaper | Daily | English | Online BEIJING (INP) - Paksat-1R, a Pakistani geostationary and an advanced communication satellite, is due to be launched in space from a Chinese satellite launching site in Xichang city in the second week of August, depending on weather conditions. Paksat-1R will replace Paksat-1, which is going to complete its useful life this year. â€œPaksat-1R is going to be a new symbolic development in Pakistan-China relations, as it will broaden the horizons of cooperation between the two countries,â€ said Pakistanâ€™s Ambassador to China Masood Khan. In an interview to mark the launch of Paksat-1R, the ambassador said that during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabaoâ€™s visit to Pakistan in December last year, the two governments had decided to deepen cooperation in space science and technology. â€œThe satellite, Paksat-1R, is a big step in that direction,â€ he said, adding, â€œIt will revolutionise the use of broadband Internet, digital television broadcasting and mobile telephony. â€œIt will spur our economy, strengthen the education and health sectors and help us with disaster preparedness and response.â€ Khan held that such cooperation with China would help Pakistan move towards self-reliance. Tracing the history of cooperation between the two countries in the realm of space science, the ambassador said that â€œit goes back to the 1990s, when Pakistan launched its first low earth orbit satellite Badr-1â€. Since then, we had been enhancing â€œour cooperationâ€ in space science and technology, he added. â€œWe are now looking at cooperation in remote sensing satellites. It is a long term project with many civilian uses. A remote sensing satellite will cover areas like agriculture, oceanography, disaster management and mitigation, crop monitoring, earth observation, water resources management, weather forecasting and urban planning. Such an application will have a direct positive impact on Pakistanâ€™s socio-economic development.â€ Expressing gratitude on behalf of the Pakistani nation to China for its support to Pakistan for developing its satellite industry, Khan said the Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) had been establishing the necessary space technology infrastructure. â€œWe are developing common technology platforms with China.â€ In the due course of time, he added, Pakistan would want to develop its spaceflight programme. The ambassador also said that leaders and professionals of the China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC), China Academy of Space Technology (CAST) and China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) were keen to extend full cooperation to Pakistan. â€œThey all are so positive, forthcoming and hospitable towards Pakistan. In this atmosphere, I am sure our cooperation will move from strength to strength,â€ Khan said. He also said that â€œit is our natural aspiration that a Pakistani astronaut aboard a Chinese spacecraft flies to the spaceâ€. â€œThis is possible because Pakistan and China enjoy relations of trust and confidence,â€ the ambassador added.