Bilateral Cooperation

In addition to the key partners, EUMETSAT has formal cooperation agreements with a number of national organisations and agencies.

EUMETSAT has formal cooperation agreements with the following organisations: China Meteorological Administration (CMA), the China State Oceanic Administration (SOA), Environment Canada (EC), Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA), Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA), the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Russian Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring (ROSHYDROMET).

In addition, interaction with these partners also takes place within the framework of various coordination groups such as CEOS, CGMS and GEO, as well as the WMO Space Programme. 

China Meteorological Administration (CMA)

SIR CMAEUMETSAT and CMA have established a mutually beneficial cooperation since 1998, which initially focussed on operational scientific and training activities, and has been strengthened over the years to include satellite data and product exchange and satellite data calibration and validation activities. In 2014, the first two CMA visiting scientists and technical experts arrived at EUMETSAT for a stay of several months. More scientific/technical exchanges are planned in the future.

The operational data exchange enables the redistribution of EUMETSAT data and products to all countries in the Asia-Pacific area and Chinese data in Europe. The data dissemination systems EUMETCast and CMACast both contribute to the global satellite dissemination system GEONETCast in support of the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS).

The cooperation with CMA is particularly beneficial with regard to the provision of CMA data to the Copernicus services. This reinforces the role of EUMETSAT as the main data provider for a number of Copernicus services: Oceanography, atmosphere monitoring and climate change.

China has been actively involved in space since the 1960s, performing a vast amount of successful satellite launches since 1970.

CMA is the largest Meteorological Service in the world, and its National Satellite Meteorology Centre, located in Beijing, operates China’s Fengyun (FY) meteorological polar-orbiting and geostationary satellite programmes.

China is a major contributor to the WMO Global Observing system and users on a global level benefit from their activities. 

CMA website

STATE OCEANIC Administration (SOA)

SIR SOAA cooperation agreement on the exchange of oceanographic satellite data between China’s National Satellite Ocean Application Service (NSOAS) – a division of the China State Oceanic Administration (SOA) - and EUMETSAT was signed in August 2012 by EUMETSAT Director-General Alain Ratier, and the Director of NSOAS, JIANG Xingwei.

The agreement further increases cooperation with China and creates new opportunities for the oceanography user community. Under the agreement, EUMETSAT provides data from the Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) instruments flying on the Metop satellites as well as from the ocean topography missions.

In return, NSOAS/SOA provides data from the HY-2 satellites, adding Chinese altimeter, radiometer, and scatterometer data to EUMETSAT’s portfolio of third party data. The cooperation consolidates EUMETSAT’s position as a key data provider for the oceanography user community. The agreement also covers cooperation on data processing, scientific, and calibration and validation activities.

SOA website

Environment Canada (EC)

SIR MSCThe formal cooperation with Environment Canada started in 2008 with an early involvement in the EUMETSAT ATOVS Retransmission Service (EARS) network.

The cooperation covers data and product access and exchange, as well as the possibility of participating in EUMETSAT’s Satellite Application Facility (SAF) network, in particular scientific and technical developments in the framework of the Ocean Sea Ice, Hydrology and GRAS SAFs. It also covers support to operational meteorology and climate monitoring through improved high-latitude observations, sharing experience on satellite meteorology training, possibilities for contribution to follow-on satellite programmes and missions (particularly in the definition stages) and potential cooperation in the context of GEO as well as for developing countries. The collaboration is expected to be enhanced once the Canadian Polar Communications and Weather satellite (PCW) mission has been approved.


EC website

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)

SIR ISROThe cooperation between EUMETSAT and ISRO was established in 2000 and today it focuses on satellite data and product exchange of the parties’ respective Earth Observation satellites in support of weather analysis and forecasting. Furthermore, the cooperation covers calibration/validation and scientific aspects as well as training.

Since early 1980, ISRO operates the KALPANA and INSAT satellite series. Similar to EUMETSAT and its Member States, ISRO coordinates the data utilisation with the India Meteorological Department (IMD). A more recent area of cooperation is oceanography. This includes or has included oceanographic data exchange from the following missions: Oceansat, ISRO-CNES’s SARAL and Megha-Tropiques, and the US-Europe Jason mission.

EUMETSAT, ISRO and CNES have a tri-partite agreement in place to enable data access to Megha-Tropiques by the European user community.


ISRO website


SIR JAXAEUMETSAT’s collaboration with the Japan Space Exploration Agency (JAXA) dates back to the early 2000s within the frameworks of international groups and committees. Since 2013, EUMETSAT holds a special user account with JAXA for the redistribution of GCOM-W1 data to EUMETSAT’s Member States and in return EUMETSAT’s users provide feedback on the use of the data.

Among other, GCOM-W1 data from the AMSR-2 instrument will be included in the operational models of the Met Office UK and ECMWF for Numerical Weather Prediction purposes and the former will also use it for ocean and precipitation imagery forecasting purposes.

JAXA is active in greenhouse gas observations through its GOSAT mission, it is expected that the collaboration with JAXA will increase in the medium to long term in view of EUMETSAT’s future generation satellites.


JAXA Website

Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)


The cooperation between EUMETSAT and JMA, concluded in 2007, enables a long-term framework to address information-sharing on ongoing and future satellite programmes, coordinating the implementation of relevant WMO and CGMS recommendations, and exchanging data and products from the respective meteorological satellites. The cooperation covers a scheme for visiting scientists and satellite calibration/validation activities and foresees interactions related to both weather analysis and forecasting, as well as climate research activities.

Further cooperation efforts envisage the possibility of infrastructure optimisation for a regional exchange of satellite data, the exchange of archived and other Earth observation satellite data, the development of satellite data extraction methods, as well as the exchange of satellite instruments and expert exchanges. 


JMA website

Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA)


EUMETSAT and KMA share a long-standing cooperation, which was strengthened in 2006 with the signature of a cooperation agreement permitting periodical consultations and a focus on satellite data applications development and data processing methodology, training, and scientific research. Since the launch of the South Korean Communication, Ocean, and Meteorological Satellite (COMS) satellite in 2010, the cooperation with KMA was extended in 2011 to include satellite data and product exchange. With COMS, KMA contributes to the WMO Global Observing System for geostationary satellites, in line with the strategy adopted by CGMS.

Benefits of this cooperation have been achieved in the fields of Numerical Weather Prediction, Nowcasting and Climate Monitoring, as well as calibration and validation activities. 


KMA website

U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

SIR NOAAOver the last 30 years, EUMETSAT has established strong cooperation with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), particularly with its National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service (NESDIS). This cooperation has be recognised with the signature of a long-term cooperation agreement in August 2013.

In 1998, NOAA and EUMETSAT signed the Initial Joint Polar System Agreement (IJPS). The IJPS comprises two polar-orbiting satellite systems and their respective ground segments and will provide and improve operational meteorological and environmental forecasting and global climate monitoring services worldwide. The IJPS will continue to provide long-term environmental observations from polar orbit.

The IJPS programme will contribute to and support the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Global Observing System, the Global Climate Observing System, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and other related programmes.

In addition to their cooperation with regard to polar-orbiting satellites, NOAA and EUMETSAT have also signed backup and data exchange agreements for their geostationary satellites.

For the medium to long-term future, and as a continuation of the IJPS cooperation, NOAA and EUMETSAT are working together towards the establishment of a Joint Polar System (JPS) by 2018. The JPS will mainly consist of the following major elements:

  • The NOAA Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) covering the afternoon orbit (PM);

  • The EUMETSAT Polar System – Second Generation (EPS-SG) Metop satellite series covering the mid-morning orbit (mid-AM);

  • Data access to other relevant third-party missions.

EUMETSAT and NOAA are also key partners of the Jason programme. Jason-2 reliably delivers detailed oceanographic data vital to understanding weather forecasting and climate change monitoring.

Starting in 2014, Jason-3 will ensure continuity in the measurement of rising sea levels carried out by Jason-2, Jason-1 and TOPEX/Poseidon over the last 18 years. CNES and NASA are also supporting the programme, with EUMETSAT maintaining the operational role already established for the Jason-2 Programme. This cooperation will continue in the context of the Jason-CS / Sentinel-6 missions.

A study detailing the EUMETSAT-NOAA Collaboration in Meteorology from Space has been published in 2013.


NOAA website

NESDIS website



EUMETSAT and ROSHYDROMET started their formal relationship in 1997. The current cooperation framework covers satellite data and product exchange from the respective geostationary and low Earth orbit satellites, satellite validation and calibration, scientific activities and training.

Early 2010, a Roshydromet HRPT receiving station in Moscow was included in the EUMETSAT Advanced Retransmission Service (EARS) network, focusing on regional near real-time data reception. This has resulted in data increase in the coverage of the Northern hemisphere. The plan is to include a further two stations (located in Novosibirsk and Khabarovsk) in the EARS service in the medium term.

Within the Russian Federation, ROSHYDROMET is the institution in charge of operating satellites with meteorological, ocean and climate related missions. Similarly to EUMETSAT, ROSHYDROMET has established a long-term satellite programme which includes geostationary (Electro), low Earth orbit (Meteor) and highly elliptical (Arctica) orbiting satellites.




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