China and Europe plan to build 'Moon Village
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ESA has confirmed rumors that the two space agencies are planning an ambitious lunar collaboration.

First hinted at by the secretary general for China's space agency, Tian Yulong, the international endeavour, about which little is currently known, could see a manned outpost being built on the surface of the Moon with a particular focus on space tourism and lunar mining.

"The Chinese have a very ambitious moon program already in place," said spokesman Pal Hvistendahl. "Space has changed since the space race of the 60s."

"We recognise that to explore space for peaceful purposes, we do international cooperation."

ESA director general Johann-Dietrich Woerner has described the proposed base as a "Moon Village" and believes that it could also serve as a launch site for future missions to Mars.

Exactly when such a project might get off the ground however remains unclear.