Chances of Sino-American Space Cooperation Low

A taikonaut emerges from China’s Shenzhou 7 spacecraft after a successful orbital flight

Space: a frontier too far for US-China cooperation Reuters

The prospects for cooperation between the United States and China in space are fading even as proponents say working together in the heavens could help build bridges in often-testy relations on Earth.

The idea of joint ventures in space, including spacewalks, explorations and symbolic “feel good” projects, have been floated from time to time by leaders on both sides.

Efforts have gone nowhere over the past decade, swamped by economic, diplomatic and security tensions, despite a 2009 attempt by President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, to kick-start the bureaucracies.

U.S. domestic politics make the issue unlikely to advance when Obama hosts Hu at the White House on Jan. 19.

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