New Member States

ESA Member States and Cooperating States

ESA now has 20 Member States. The national bodies responsible for space in these countries sit on ESA’s governing Council: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Canada also sits on the Council and takes part in some projects under a Cooperation Agreement. Hungary, Estonia, Latvia and Slovenia are participating in the Plan for European Cooperating States (PECS), while other countries are in negotiation with ESA about joining this initiative.

Portugal became ESA's 15th Member State in 2000, Greece became the 16th in March 2005, and Luxembourg became the 17th in June 2005. The Czech Republic formally became ESA's 18th Member State on 12 November 2008. Romania became ESA's 19th Member State on 22 December 2011, and Poland exchanged Accession Agreements with ESA in September 2012.

As can be seen from this list, not all member countries of the European Union are members of ESA and not all ESA Member States are members of the EU. ESA is an entirely independent organisation although it maintains close ties with the EU through an ESA/EC Framework Agreement. The two organisations share a joint European Strategy for Space and have together developed the European Space Policy.

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