The government of the United Kingdom is set to start building a satellite system of its own. The announcement comes after being shut out of the sensitive security information that is surrounding the Galileo project of the European Union.
The €10 billion (£9 billion satellite program has started proceedings to remove the United Kingdom from its involvement in the said project ahead of Brexit in around seven months time.
The Galileo is a satellite program being developed by the European Union as a rival to the US Global Positioning System. It has emerged as a flashpoint between the United Kingdom and the EU, which is already starting to treat the UK as an outsider.
Some experts have said that they believe that it is increasingly unlikely that the European Union will change its mind and allow the United Kingdom to stay on board the Galileo project, or allow it to bid for some contracts within the project.
According to reports from the Sunday Telegraph, Philip Hammond, the British Chancellor, has been given the all-clear to allocate £100 million from the £3 billion Brexit fund of the government in order to build a UK rival. An official announcement is anticipated to be released later this week.
The new programme is estimated to be over £6bn cheaper as compared to the Galileo project, as the United Kingdom has built much of the infrastructure of the project to date.
Galileo was commissioned way back in 2003 and is scheduled to be completed in 2020.
The European Union has said that the United Kingdom will still be able to continue to use the open signal of Galileo, however, it also said that the military of Britain could be denied access to the encrypted version once the satellite becomes operational.
Should the United Kingdom continue to be shut out from the project, the country could demand a repayment of £1 billion for the work that it has already carried out on Galileo.