Singapore — Europe’s Arianespace is discounting the price of satellite launches with its Ariane 5 rockets as it competes against US rival SpaceX for customers before the release of the cheaper Ariane 6 rocket next year, a senior executive said on Wednesday. Arianespace is aiming for the cost of launching the Ariane 6 to fall by about 40% compared to the the Ariane 5 through design changes and higher volume production, bringing its prices more in line with Elon Musk’s SpaceX, Arianespace MD and head of sales for Asia-Pacific Vivian Quenet said. In current marketing campaigns, he has said the company is offering customers, such as telecoms organisations, an Ariane 5 launch for the same price as the Ariane 6. “We have made a lot of effort on the sales price. When we do that, the result is very positive,” Quenet told reporters on Wednesday, declining to discuss details of profitability. Arianespace is competing for two major launch contracts in the Asia-Pacific region that should be awa...

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