LA PAZ, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- Bolivia said Wednesday it will create a space agency to manage and execute a satellite project of Chinese companies to improve communications in the country.
The Bolivian Space Agency will promote technology transfer, human resources training and the application of satellite communication programs in education, defense, medicine and detection of climate phenomena, said Public Works and Services Minister Walter Delgadillo at a press conference.
The agency will be formed by representatives from six ministries that will be appointed by President Evo Morales, Delgadillo said.
In October 2009, the Bolivian government, China's Great Wall Industry Corporation and the International Telecommunication Union signed a memorandum to construct and set a satellite in orbit.
Bolivia is investing some 300 million U.S. dollars in this project.
"This program is very important for Bolivia, because with the improvement of the communication system, the development of production, education, health, detection of natural phenomena, technology and other sectors will be boosted," Delgadillo said.
The satellite, "Tupac Katari," is named in honor of an indigenous leader of 18th-century Bolivia. It is expected to be in orbit in 2013.
Morales is scheduled to visit China in March to sign a contract on the construction of the satellite.