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29 octobre 2015 4 29 /10 /octobre /2015 17:50
Increasing awareness of European Armament Cooperation

 

Brussels - 27 October, 2015 European Defense Agency

 

From 27 to 29 October 2015, an Awareness Level Module of the European Armament Cooperation Course (EAC) is taking place at the European Defence Agency’s premises. Organised by the European Defence Agency (EDA), the European Security and Defence College (ESDC) and the Austrian Ministry of Defence (MOD) and Sports, the course has attracted the highest number of attendees in its four-year history. Forty-six enrolled students represent thirteen EDA Member States, the European Commission, European External Action Service (EEAS) and Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR). 

 

The aim of the EAC course is to enhance mutual understanding of the armaments cooperation issues and to serve as a useful networking platform to foster and harmonise armaments cooperation among the Member States. Most of all, it addresses junior personnel who need to gain knowledge and experience in international acquisition and project management. The course also complements the curriculums of available national courses. “We believe that the practitioners who work in national and international armament cooperation can highly profit from the course. We are able to provide them with practical knowledge and understanding of the armament sector along with its frameworks, the stakeholders’ tools and processes as well as challenges and benefits available at the EU level,” says Massimo Guasoni, the EDA Head of Unit Education, Training & Exercise.

 

Towards Europe’s strategic autonomy 

Rini Goos, the EDA Deputy Chief Executive, welcomed the course participants and, in his speech, he pointed out the key elements for European strategic autonomy and freedom of action: “Apart from working on capabilities, first of all, we must strive to enhance investment in traditional defence research, particularly in collaborative Research & Technology. Secondly, we need a sound European industrial policy. Thirdly, I would like to mention standardisation: a pan-European standardisation approach is the key to increase European competiveness on a global scale and to strengthen the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base Strategy; it is also the main driver for interoperability. And last but not least, civil-military ‘dual-use’ synergies need to be better exploited. It is only if we move ahead along these four strands of work that Europe will be able to attain strategic autonomy and become a security provider rather than a security consumer”.  

 

Dr Wolfgang Sagmeister from the Austrian MOD being the Course Director will make sure that all the course objectives will have been met. The topics on the agenda are much varied and include the presentations of the EDA and the ESDC; military dimension of the Common Security and Defence Policy; EU military capability development along with the EDA Capability Development Plan, current trends in military defence capability development; intercultural aspects in international cooperation; EU Defence policies in a wider context, and other.  

The EAC course traditionally comprises two parts: an Awareness Level Module taking place in Brussels, and an Expert Level Course, which will be held from 23 to 27 November 2015 in Warsaw, Poland. However, in order to attend the course, it is mandatory to complete an Internet-based Distant Learning (IDL) module offered by the ESDC. 

 

Shaping an educational platform

Since 2006, the EDA had been working towards establishing a proper training frame in response to the growing needs for harmonised education in the armament acquisition field. In 2009, the Czech Republic’s EU Presidency supported the creation of a new European armaments cooperation course, providing an EU-wide training platform where a common understanding of a European approach to armaments cooperation could be promoted. The EDA Member States welcomed the initiative and later that year the EDA Steering Board, in the National Armaments Directors configuration, approved the top-level European Armaments Cooperation (EAC) Framework, under which the current course was established.

In 2013, thanks to the initiative of Austria and other like-minded countries, including the Czech Republic, Germany, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, the course took its current form. It followed the success of the pilot European Armaments Cooperation Course organised in Brussels and Stadtschlaining in 2012.

 

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30 juin 2015 2 30 /06 /juin /2015 18:50
source EDA

source EDA


19.06.2015 source SEDE
 

Are exports made to countries outside of the European Union (EU) impeding European cooperation in armaments? Although the numbers vary significantly from one country to another, the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base (EDTIB) now collectively derives an important share of its collective turnover from extra-EU export sales. Accordingly, EU Member states devote important political, financial and administrative resources to support and promote their national producers in major competition overseas. The current scarcity of common European programmes, and the limited impacts of recently introduced legislation designed to harmonize national defence procurement rules and to facilitate intra-EU transfers, could indicate that extra-EU exports are detrimental to European cooperation on weapons projects. This negative effect would primarily come from introducing greater levels of competition between European companies creating greater tensions, which are not conducive to cooperation on the EU level. The study finds that there is indeed a correlation between competition for major foreign markets and difficulties of intra-EU cooperation but makes the analysis that extra-EU exports are more a symptom of structural constraints faced by major suppliers, such as the weakness of defence spending in European countries, and the persistence of fragmentation and duplication of production capabilities.

 

Executive summary

 

The impact of extra-EU exports on European armaments cooperation

The interrogation at the heart of this study is whether the importance of the European defence industrial and technological base (EDTIB) extra-EU exports in its turnover has consequences on European cooperation in armaments. The EDTIB derives a significant share of its collective turnover from export sales and EU Member states devote important political, financial and administrative resources to support and promote their national producers in major competition overseas.

This situation has led to the proposition that competition between Member States to gain market shares overseas and have become a handicap in establishing an integrated European defence market. Implied here is that this dynamic leads Member States to prioritize the international markets at the expense of European joint initiatives.

 

Approach to evaluating the consequences of extra-EU exports on European armaments cooperation

In order to assess the importance of extra-EU exports in the European DTIB turnover, the study first investigates the origin of the turnovers of the 6 countries of the Letter of Intent (LoI), namely France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, to which Poland, as an emerging European supplier, was added. It is largely recognized that the LoI countries concentrate the core of European defence production capabilities expressed both in quantitative (turnover) and qualitative (range and diversity of defence specific capacities) terms. It demonstrates the importance of extra-EU exports varies between 18% (Germany,Poland) and 43% (Italy) for the year 2012, and that sales to markets outside of the EU represent a significant share of their turnover.

Second, the study presents the support and guidance mechanisms implemented by the LoI countries plus Poland to support their companies’ extra-EU export efforts. This part shows that Member States devote significant financial, administrative and political resources to help their ‘national defence champions’ win major sales abroad. Considering the fact that some of these countries are involved in cooperation programmes, States are sometimes faced with the choice of either supporting a domestic made system, or one produced in cooperation. In other cases, promotion resources help a multinational company compete with itself on a foreign market by supporting a national subsidiary of a company based in another country.

A third part of the report explores the ineffectiveness of the European Common Position (CP) on arms exports in harmonising export rules and guidance at the European level. Using the recent debate surrounding the sale of Mistral command and power projection ship to Russia, it demonstrates that one of the main goals of the CP – to create a more level-playing field by eliminating differences of restrictiveness in national export legislation – was not achieved.

 

The relationship between extra-EU exports and cooperation

There are indications of a strong correlation between, on the one hand, the importance of extra-EU exports for EU Member States and especially for LoI countries and on the other hand, difficulties of European cooperation between companies and between Member States. Competitions for extra-EU markets often involve several European suppliers, which are supported in different ways by their states in these contests.

Multiple examples presented in the report indeed show that this rivalry fosters tensions and hostility between European actors, which, in turn, has a negative impact on European cooperation in the field of armament.

However, this report did not uncover evidence to support the idea that extra-EU defence exports are actually causing the challenges currently displayed by European defence production cooperation.

Examination of past armament collaborations or competitions suggest that there is no automatic link between frictions and mistrust among suppliers with either exports or cooperation. Therefore, the importance of foreign sales may be a symptom of deeper-seated features of the European defence market.

 

The structural drivers of extra-EU exports

The domination of national logic in European defence and the weakness of European defence spending would explain both the ‘race to export’ by individual countries and the reluctance to engage in cooperation programmes. The general weakness of European defence expenditures over the past 15 years contrasts starkly with the general growth observed in the rest of the world. This has led both companies and Member States to turn to these extr-EU markets to counteract weaker domestic sales. Since the issue of the fragmentation and duplication of defence production capabilities across European countries remain, competition between European producers in foreign market seems inevitable. In turn, the high stakes and intensity of these competitions warrant significant Member Sates support.

 

Download The Extra-EU Defence Exports' Effects on European Armaments Cooperation

 

Note RP Defense: read Armaments Co-operation Strategy

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8 septembre 2014 1 08 /09 /septembre /2014 11:50
EDA looking for its new Cooperation Planning & Support director

 

Brussels, 3 September 2014 - European Defence Agency
 

The European Defence Agency is on the hunt for its new Cooperation Planning & Support director. Candidates must apply before 30 September.

 

Since its reorganization in January 2014, the European Defence Agency is structured into three operational directorates, one of which is focused on early identification of military requirements at European level and through-life aspect of capabilities. 

The EDA has recently posted a vacancy to recruit the new director of this Cooperation Planning and Support directorate. Candidates must apply before 30 September.

To be based in Brussels, the Cooperation Planning & Support director will be responsible for the coherence among the various work strands and programmes assigned to his directorate, managing a large portfolio of cooperative efforts and projects. A strong knowledge of and experience in defence, capability development, European armaments cooperation and EU programmes and policies is required.

 

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