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Defence Industries

Defence Industries

“A Europe that Protects and Defends” with these words former President Juncker took leadership for greater European Defence Cooperation.

Building on previous initiatives adopted by the Council and European Parliament, the European Commission launched the European Defence Action Plan to support the competitiveness and innovation of the European defence industry and the development of a strong European Defence Technological and Industrial Base. It has put in place the legislative and policy frameworks to strengthen the single market for defence.

In the 2016 European Defence Action Plan (EDAP) the Commission proposed a list of concrete measures/areas to support the development of defence capabilities needed in the future

  1. The key initiative the Commission proposed is European Defence Fund that supports collaborative research projects and the joint development of defence capabilities with funding from the EU budget.
  2. Fostering investments in defence supply chains is also a key field of action. The Commission is deploying considerable efforts to support SMEs and help them effectively engage in cross-border partnerships. These SMEs are mostly concentrated in 5 EU countries (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Sweden).

The European Network of Defence-related Regions (ENDR), funded under COSME, brings together regional authorities and cluster organisations sharing experience and best practices in fields such as integrating defence into smart specialisation strategies (RIS3), accessing EU funding and supporting defence SMEs.

The European Commission supports strategic cooperation between key defence stakeholders and encourages the use of existing EU programmes and tools designed to address skills gaps and to foster new skills, retraining, and reskilling in the defence industry.

  1. A legal framework aimed at ensuring an open and competitive defence market is put in place at the EU level:

Directive 2009/81/EC on defence and security procurement aims at coordinating procedures for contract awards in defence and security.

Directive 2009/43/EC on intra-EU transfers of defence related products aims at simplifying the terms and conditions for transfers of defence-related products within the European Union by alleviating obstacles caused by the fragmentation of the European defence market.