“I am proud that Samantha Cristoforetti has been appointed commander of the International Space Station (Iss)” on the occasion of Expedition 68 which will see her in orbit in 2022 “. This was stated in an interview with Adnkronos by the president of the Italian space agency ( Asi), Giorgio Saccoccia. “At a time when space activities are so central, having an important role also for our astronauts confirms what Italy is doing in this sector”. “I am very happy for this additional role entrusted to us. to Cristoforetti also because it was me during the ESA Council at ministerial level in Seville in 2019 who negotiated with the European Space Agency the promise of a role for the Italian astronaut by 2022 “, explains Saccoccia.” It is a great turned out to have in addition to this flight also the guarantee that Cristoforetti will be commander of the ISS. It is a confirmation of how we are taken into account as a country by international institutions “, adds the president of ASI. To this, Saccoccia notes,” is added the fact that both Samantha and the Italian astronauts are now a reference for the country above all for the young people. Cristoforetti is the only female astronaut in Europe and will be the first Italian female astronaut to command the International Space Station. It is an important message for the new generations: this is what can be achieved when you have a solid country behind you and when a professional path is supported by the ASI and the institutions “. , “it’s changing. The International Space Station is also experiencing this transition which sees an increasingly commercial use of space but which also represents an economic and development opportunity for new products and new technologies. There will be new private initiatives and new opportunities linked to the strong economic return that this sector represents “. The ISS, explains Saccoccia,” was born as a purely institutional initiative. It was probably the largest international cooperation project. Now the role of governments and institutions will grow even more and there will be new economic and commercial opportunities also for private initiatives. It is the future scenario of space “. A scenario therefore in full change that the president of the ASI looks favorably on.” Space generates economic growth and offers an idea of the future. And over time it is becoming a solid and lasting initiative, almost within everyone’s reach, even if for now talking about space within everyone’s reach is still a big word. But surely we are getting closer and someone who has the resources today can think of seizing the opportunity “. The new government, Saccoccia emphasizes,” with the undersecretary with responsibility for Spazio Bruno Tabacci and with the Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, acknowledges the importance of this sector and is making every effort to seize all the opportunities with the coordination of the Italian Space Agency. The signals given by the government are extremely positive. “In the meantime, we are already looking at the next ESA Council at ministerial level which will take place at the end of 2022.” We have started to embark on the path that will lead us to this event and which will undoubtedly allow important complementary national, also thanks, in particular, to the measures contained in the NRP “.