In this Jan. 17, 2017 file photo, people photograph the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket booster as it makes its way into the port of Los Angeles. (Chuck Bennett/Orange County Register/SCNG via AP, File)
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Europe's Arianespace is discounting the price of satellite launches with its Ariane 5 rockets as it competes against U.S. 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 around 40 percent versus the Ariane 5 through design changes and higher volume production, bringing its prices more in line with Elon Musk's SpaceX, Arianespace Managing Director and Head of Sales for Asia-Pacific Vivian Quenet said.Arianespace, majority-owned by a joint venture of Airbus and Safran, completed 11 launches with its Ariane 5, Vega and Soyuz rockets in 2018, in line with guidance that had been lowered mid-year from an initial 14 .
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