Watch this space: The development of commercial space law in Australia and New Zealand

Joel Lisk, Melissa de Zwart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Space law is regulated largely by international treaties which have little to say regarding the use and regulation of commercial space. As the costs of access to outer space decrease and the benefits exponentially increase, more countries are seeking to support and encourage ‘NewSpace’ entrepreneurs in order to establish commercial space industries. Australia has been a minor player in the space domain, primarily through involvement with Europe and the US since the late 1960s, but its domestic legislation bears little relevance to the shape of space industry today. Australia’s neighbour, New Zealand, now wants to become a NewSpace incubator and has recently enacted legislation designed to make it a competitive host nation for launch providers. This article will compare the regulatory space regimes of these two countries to provide an assessment of the importance of domestic regulation in fostering competitive commercial space services, for countries seeking to become competitive in the commercial space race.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)444-468
Number of pages25
JournalFederal Law Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Commercial Space Law
  • Australia
  • New Zealand


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