Defence ministers will discuss the latest developments related to EU-NATO cooperation with NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. They will address issues such as hybrid threats and military mobility.
In the current strategic environment, with unprecedented challenges emanating from the South and the East, cooperation between the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is essential. The security of EU and NATO are inter-connected: not only are 22 EU Member States also NATO Allies; together, they can also mobilise a broad range of tools and make the most efficient use of resources to address those challenges and enhance the security of their citizens. EU-NATO cooperation constitutes an integral pillar of the EU’s work aimed at strengthening European security and defence, as part of the implementation of the EU Global Strategy. It also contributes to Trans-Atlantic burden sharing. A stronger EU and a stronger NATO are mutually reinforcing.
Luxembourg. Foreign affairs and defence ministers discussed security and defence cooperation in the EU. Namely the permanent structured cooperation (PESCO); the military mobility; the initiatives proposed in the framework of the future multiannual financial framework, in view of the European Defence Fund and the European peace facility; the fight against hybrid threats in light of the joint communication of 13 June.
The EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini said the “important decisions” will advance the EU defence work in preparation for the European Council. The ministers adopted the rules for the governance of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) projects. From now onwards they will focus on the implementation of the 17 already existing projects.
The preparation of the new set of projects to be adopted by November and the work they will start to prepare the conditions for third countries’ participation in PESCO projects.
The misnisters also took a decision on the first steps on the implementation of the Military Mobility Action Plan, for which the proposal on the table on the Multiannual Financial Framework is a € 6.5 billion for the next 7 years. We also decided to move forward with the strengthening of our work on the civilian work on security and defence and the Member States welcomed my proposals to counter hybrid threats. So I will bring this entire package to the European Council on Thursday in Brussels.
“Member States also welcomed the proposal I made on our financial instruments to support our defence and security work. There is a European Peace Facility idea on the table. We will now move on with the Member States to look at the details of this proposal” – Mogherini continued.
Mogherini claimed she had an excellent exchange with the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who joined ministers. “We looked at the challenges that the transatlantic relations are facing today and they do not relate to our work on defence and security, which has been excellent. We have worked together to prepare our deliverables for the NATO Summit at the beginning of July” – the diplomat concluded.
“We decided to increase the level of cooperation even more and focus on the most positive state of relationship we can have. It has never been as good as now and I hope this spirit of good cooperation between the European Union and NATO will also help in solving some of the issues on other tables that could be challenging in the months to come” – Mogherini concluded.
As part of a major drive to consolidate and reinforce EU security and defence, Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and EU High Representative Federica Mogherini presented an Action Plan on Military Mobility.
The objective is to work together at European level to ensure road and rail networks are suitable for military transport, and to simplify and streamline national rules for quick and seamless movement of military troops and vehicles across the continent in case of a crisis.
NATO and European Parliaments MEPs have welcomed the Plan.