According to LI Wang, chairman of China’s Satellite Navigation System Committee, China will launch some 18 Beidou navigation satellites by 2018. Six to eight Beidou satellites will be sent into orbit in the second half of 2017. The Beidou (North Star) satellite navigation system will be able to provide services for countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative by 2018. By 2020, the Beidou satellites will form a complete global satellite navigation system. The output value of China’s satellite navigation and locating services totaled 210 billion yuan (30 billion €) in 2016, with the Beidou system contributing more than 30 percent of the total value.

CAS news release, May 24, 2017