“Creating the Silicon Valley of the Space Industry in Hokkaido”
Asia’s first privately operated spaceport, “Hokkaido Spaceport”.
Taiki Town, Hokkaido is pleased to announce that it will begin full-scale operations of “Hokkaido Spaceport (HOSPO)”, Asia’s first privately operated spaceport, in April 2021, with the aim of realizing the plan to create a “Silicon Valley of the Space Industry in Hokkaido”. From 2016 to 2018, Taiki Town held discussions in the “Space Town Promotion Council”, composed of local companies and organizations, and published the “Hokkaido Spaceport Concept” in 2019. The town subsequently received certification from the Cabinet Office for its concrete plan (the “Taiki Initiative! Regional Revitalization Promotion Plan through Aerospace Industry Agglomeration”).
To materialize this plan and promote the project, Taiki Town and six other companies in Hokkaido established SPACE COTAN Co., Ltd. in Taiki Town on April 20, 2021, and will move from the planning to the execution phase this fiscal year. SPACE COTAN will support HOSPO’s operations, including launching rockets and spacecraft (spaceplanes) for space travel, as well as research and development for the growth of the aerospace industry and providing business opportunities, including regional revitalization.
Both Taiki Town and SPACE COTAN are committed to developing HOSPO as a world-leading infrastructure for the space business, providing a comfortable business environment for all those involved in the space industry, and contributing to the advancement of humanity.
Hokkaido Spaceport is planning to conduct private rocket launches and aerospace experiments in 2021. By developing launch facilities for artificial satellite rockets and expanding runways, it aims to contribute to the global space industry.
The market size of the space industry, which the world is focusing on as a growth industry, is estimated to expand to 100 trillion yen by 2040. Additionally, the number of small artificial satellite launches weighing less than 500kg is expected to increase from about 350 (in 2019) to about 1,000 (in 2030), and to meet this demand, 60 to 300 additional rockets and launch facilities for small satellite launches are needed annually. However, there is currently no world-class private rocket launch facility for artificial satellites in Asia.
Taiki Town, along with SPACE COTAN, will contribute to the growth of the space industry through the operation of HOSPO by developing experimental and launch facilities and runways for artificial satellite rockets and spaceplanes. They will also provide a comfortable research, development, and business environment for everyone involved in the space industry, including advanced experiments in satellite data-driven businesses, and the deployment of shared workspace facilities and shared offices based on the concept of the sharing economy. In HOSPO, private company Interstellar Technologies’ rocket launch and aerospace experiments by various companies and organizations are scheduled for the 2021 fiscal year. HOSPO will be the first rocket launch facility in Asia available to private companies worldwide and the first spaceport in Asia capable of both horizontal takeoff and landing as well as vertical launch. Its geographical advantages, such as having open seas to the east and south, have drawn attention from rocket launch operators in Asia and Europe.
Launch Complex-1 LC-1
Launch Complex-2 LC-2
For the first time in Japan, Taiki Town is utilizing Corporate “Furusato” tax payment and Individual “Furusato” tax payment for the development of the Silicon Valley of the Space Industry. With the use of Corporate “Furusato” tax payment, approximately 100 million yen of donations have already been collected.
Part of the donations will be used for the construction of HOSPO’s new rocket launch pads, Launch Complex-1 (LC-1) and Launch Complex-2 (LC-2). In addition to normal donations and individual Furusato tax payments, we will utilize the Corporate “Furusato” tax payment system to secure the necessary funds. As part of Taiki Town’s regional revitalization plan, “Taiki Town Initiative: Regional Creation Promotion Plan through Aerospace Industry Agglomeration,” the town included the construction of the spaceport facilities in the use of corporate Furusato tax payments and received certification from the Cabinet Office in March 2020. This use of Furusato tax payments for spaceport construction is the first such initiative in Japan. We plan to utilize 2.5 billion yen of donations to gather 50% of the construction cost of 5 billion yen (1 billion yen for the first phase, including LC-1 construction and runway extension, and 4 billion yen for the second phase, including LC-2 construction), while the remaining 50% will be applied for local creation subsidies. As of April 20, 2021, a total of 92.5 million yen in donations had been raised for the HOSPO development, with support primarily from companies in Hokkaido and Jukkoku, including Air Water Hokkaido Co., Ltd., Kawata Industries Co., Ltd. Group, and Jukkoku Mainichi Shimbun Co., Ltd.