China will help Sri Lanka launch its first satellite by 2015, officials said.
Local company SupremeSAT said it has reached an agreement with the Sri Lankan board of investment for $20 million for the project. It has entered into an agreement with China's state-owned China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) for the design, manufacturing and launching of the satellite, Xinhua reported.
By 2015, the company hopes to utilise the orbital slot of Sri Lanka -- located at 50 degrees east -- and launch the island's first telecom satellite.
"We already have two co-branded satellites with the Chinese company in orbit and by 2015 we hope to launch our own satellite which will be Sri Lanka's first," a SupremeSAT official told Xinhua.
The CGWIC is the sole commercial organisation authorised by the Chinese government to provide satellites, commercial launch services and to carry out international space cooperation.
SupremeSAT will offer all types of telecom services including broadband and networking services, various broadcast solutions and other services such as e-government and e-learning.
SupremeSAT chairman RM Manivannan said the firm was coordinating with the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission on the necessary approval for the launch.