The National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA) today reached
an agreement with the Republic of Kiribati at the capital city Tarawa
to prepare and use the Christmas Island as a landing facility for

As a result of this agreement, work is expected to start on
facilities, equipment, and infrastructure preparations for the
High-Speed Flight Demonstration (HSFD) scheduled to be conducted
in 2001.

A Summary of the Agreement with the Kiribati Government on the
Preparation of a Landing Site for the H-II Orbiting
Plane-Experimental (HOPE-X)

1.General Agreement

– The land of Christmas Island is to be borrowed as the HOPE-X
landing site. The total period is twenty years with reevaluation
taking place after 7, 12, and 16 years.

2.Landing Facilities

– NASDA will have priority in use of the existing Aeon Airstrip
(landing site).

– NASDA will borrow for use in establishing storage and other
facilities around Aeon Airstrip.

– Height restrictions (regarding building height) and restricted
areas will be determined based on HOPE-X range safety

3.Infrastructure Preparation

The following steps will be taken as part of the landing site

– Creation of a water jettiy

– Repair of the airport currently in use (Cassidy Airport)

– Widening of road A1 which connects Cassidy Airport and Aeon


– A liaison office to be established on the Christmas Island to
facilitate interaction between the Kiribati Government and NASDA,
and assignment of a Coordinator and a Environmental Protection

– With commencement of the project, environmental impact to be held
to a minimum.