Procedure : 2020/2080(INI)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A9-0165/2020

Texts tabled :

A9-0165/2020

Debates :

PV 19/10/2020 - 21
CRE 19/10/2020 - 21

Votes :

Texts adopted :

P9_TA(2020)0278

<Date>{29/09/2020}29.9.2020</Date>
<NoDocSe>A9-0165/2020</NoDocSe>
PDF 193kWORD 77k

<TitreType>REPORT</TitreType>

<Titre>on a European Parliament recommendation to the Council and the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy concerning the implementation and governance of Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO)</Titre>

<DocRef>(2020/2080(INI))</DocRef>


<Commission>{AFET}Committee on Foreign Affairs</Commission>

Rapporteur: <Depute>Radosław Sikorski</Depute>

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RECOMMENDATION
 MINORITY POSITION
 OPINION OF THE COMMITTEE ON CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS
 INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE
 FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RECOMMENDATION

to the Council and the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy concerning the implementation and governance of Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO)

(2020/2080(INI))

The European Parliament,

 having regard to the Treaty on European Union (TEU) and in particular its Article 36, Article 42(6), Article 46, and its Protocol (No 10) on permanent structured cooperation,

 having regard to Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/2315 of 11 December 2017 establishing permanent structured cooperation (PESCO) and determining the list of participating Member States[1],

 having regard to Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/340 of 6 March 2018 establishing the list of projects to be developed under PESCO[2],

 having regard to Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/909 of 25 June 2018 establishing a common set of governance rules for PESCO projects[3],

 having regard to Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1797 of 19 November 2018 amending and updating Decision (CFSP) 2018/340 establishing the list of projects to be developed under PESCO[4],

 having regard to Council Decision (CFSP) 2019/1909 of 12 November 2019 amending and updating Decision (CFSP) 2018/340 establishing the list of projects to be developed under PESCO[5],

 having regard to the Council conclusions of 13 November 2017 on security and defence in the context of the EU Global Strategy,

 having regard to the Council conclusions of 19 November 2018 on Security and Defence in the context of the EU Global Strategy-,

 having regard to the Council conclusions of 17 June 2019 on Security and Defence in the context of the EU Global Strategy,

 having regard to the Council Recommendation of 15 October 2018 concerning the sequencing of the fulfilment of the more binding commitments undertaken in the framework of permanent structured cooperation (PESCO) and specifying more precise objectives (2018/C374/01)[6],

 having regard to its resolution of 16 March 2017 on constitutional, legal and institutional implications of a common security and defence policy: possibilities offered by the Lisbon Treaty[7],

 having regard to the Arms Trade Treaty, which entered into force in December 2014,

 having regard to Rule 118 of its Rules of Procedure,

 having regard to the report of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (A9-0165/2020),

A. whereas in accordance with Article 42(2) of the TEU, the common security and defence policy (CSDP) includes the progressive framing of a common EU defence policy, which will lead to a common defence being put in place when the European Council, acting unanimously, so decides; whereas PESCO constitutes an important step towards achieving this objective;

B. whereas PESCO should be used to further operationalise and develop the obligation laid out in Article 42(7) of the TEU to provide mutual aid and assistance, as recalled in the joint notification by Member States to the Council and to the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on PESCO, signed by 23 Member States on 13 November 2017, in order to improve the readiness of the Member States to provide solidarity to a fellow Member State if it becomes the victim of an armed aggression on its territory;

C. whereas according to Article 1(a) of the Protocol (No 10) on permanent structured cooperation established by Article 42 of the TEU, one of the objectives of PESCO is for the Member States to develop their defence capabilities more intensively by furthering their national contributions and participation, where appropriate, in multinational forces, the main European equipment programmes, and in the European Defence Agency’s activities;

D. whereas Article 1(b) of Protocol No 10 states that the Member States are to ‘have the capacity to supply by 2010 at the latest either at national level or as a component of multinational force groups, targeted combat units for the missions planned, structured at a tactical level as a battle group, with support elements including transport and logistics, capable of carrying out the tasks referred to in Article 43 of the Treaty on European Union, within a period of five to 30 days, in particular in response to requests from the United Nations Organisation, and which can be sustained for an initial period of 30 days and be extended up to at least 120 days’; whereas Article 1(b) needs to be revised in order to adequately respond to the challenging geopolitical environment; whereas the Member States are still far from achieving this goal;

E. whereas the establishment of an EU common defence strategy is needed now more than ever in the context of multiple and growing threats;

F. whereas the level of ambition under the EU Global Strategy in the field of security and defence covers crisis management and capacity building in partner countries with the aim of protecting Europe and its citizens; whereas no Member State can protect itself alone, given that the security and defence threats the EU faces, and which are targeted against its citizens, territories and infrastructures, are common multi-faceted threats that cannot be addressed by a single Member State on its own; whereas an effective EU system for efficient, coherent, strategic and joint use of resources would be advantageous for the EU’s overall level of security and defence and is more than ever necessary in a fast-deteriorating security environment; whereas increased efforts at cooperation on cyber defence, such as information sharing, training and operational support, are needed in order to better counter hybrid threats;

G. whereas the main actors of PESCO are the participating Member States (pMS), which provide the capabilities for implementing CSDP (Article 42(1) and Article 42(3) TEU), and which deploy them in EU operations and missions where the Council entrusts them with the execution of a task, within the Union framework (Article 42(1), (4) and (5), Article 43 and Article 44 TEU), and which develop their defence capabilities, inter alia, when appropriate within the framework of the European Defence Agency (Article 42(3) and Article 45 TEU);

H. whereas PESCO’s long-term vision is to provide the Union with operational capacity drawing on military assets which are complemented by civilian means, to achieve a coherent full-spectrum force package available to the Member States for military CSDP; whereas PESCO should enhance the EU’s capacity to act as an international security provider in order to contribute effectively and credibly to international, regional and European security, including by preventing the importation of insecurity, and to enhance interoperability in order to protect EU citizens and maximise the effectiveness of defence spending by reducing duplication, overcapacity and uncoordinated procurement;

I. whereas according to Council decision 2017/2315 establishing PESCO, enhanced defence capabilities of the Member States will also benefit NATO, following the single set of forces principle, provided that duplication is avoided and interoperability is prioritised, while strengthening the European pillar within the alliance and responding to repeated calls for more balanced transatlantic burden-sharing; whereas NATO remains the cornerstone of the security architecture of many Member States;

J. whereas PESCO creates a binding framework between the pMS, which committed themselves to jointly investing, planning, developing and operating defence capabilities within the Union framework in a permanent and structured manner by subscribing to 20 binding commitments in five areas set by the TEU; whereas these commitments should constitute a move from mere defence cooperation towards full interoperability as well as the enhancement of Member States’ defence forces; whereas these binding commitments are evaluated annually in the national implementation plans by the PESCO secretariat, which can be consulted by the participating Member States; whereas despite these binding commitments, no effective compliance mechanism for PESCO is in place; whereas PESCO projects should be implemented in a manner that reflects the industrial capacity, duplication concerns or budgetary constraints of pMS; whereas the compliance mechanism for PESCO should be improved;

K. whereas the pMS must show full political engagement with the 20 binding commitments to which they have subscribed; whereas military capacity planning cycles usually take longer than three years; whereas the current national military capacity planning cycles are mostly driven by the previously established NATO Defence Planning Process; whereas more progress should be achieved with regard to significantly embedding PESCO into national defence planning processes in order to ensure the capacity of pMS to finalise PESCO projects;

L. whereas PESCO was originally conceived as an avant-garde, comprising the Member States willing and able to upgrade their cooperation in defence to a new level of ambition; whereas the fact that there are 25 pMS must not lead PESCO  to be constrained by the ‘lowest common denominator’ approach; whereas the number of pMS indicates a willingness for closer cooperation in security and defence;

M. whereas work on the first three waves of PESCO projects has led to the establishment and adoption of 47 projects; whereas to date, none has come to fruition; whereas the projects in the first wave are mainly capability-building projects involving as many Member States as possible; whereas the inclusive nature of PESCO projects should not lead the pMS to water down their ambitions; whereas it is essential that PESCO focus on projects that deliver genuine added value;

N. whereas there seems to be no overarching common logic between the 47 PESCO projects; whereas the current list of projects lacks coherence, scope and strategic ambition so that the most obvious capability gaps will not be filled, and does not adequately or fully address critical shortfalls as identified by the Headline Goal Process through the Capability Development Plan (CDP) and the Coordinated Annual Review on Defence (CARD); whereas one of these projects has been stopped in order to avoid unnecessary duplication; whereas other projects did not make sufficient progress or are at risk of being stopped, and around 30 projects are still in the conceptual development and preparatory phase; whereas the development of ambitious military capacity projects can take up to 10 years; whereas the vast majority of PESCO projects coincide with European Defence Fund (EDF) and NATO shortfalls;

O. whereas the second phase of PESCO is to start in 2021; whereas this second phase will deliver concrete and significant results, which means that a prioritisation of projects is necessary;

P. whereas certain PESCO projects are focussed on operational deployment, such as EUFOR Crisis Response Operation Core (EUFOR CROC), Military Mobility and Network of Logistic Hubs, while others are more focussed on the development of military capacities, such as Cyber Rapid Response Teams and Mutual Assistance in Cyber Security (CRRTs); whereas both approaches are needed to decisively contribute to the evolution towards an EU common integrated security and defence strategy;

Q. whereas some of the most strategic PESCO projects have the potential to decisively contribute to the Union’s strategic autonomy and to decisively contribute to the creation of a coherent full-spectrum force package;

R. whereas major European defence projects such as the Future Air Combat System (FCAS) and the Main Ground Combat System (MGCS) currently remain outside the scope of PESCO;

S. whereas it is crucial to prioritise and address the capability gaps identified in the CDP, and to build on the CARD with the aim of increasing Europe’s strategic autonomy;

T. whereas only some of the current PESCO projects do sufficiently address the capability shortcomings identified under the CDP and CARD or already sufficiently take into account the High Impact Capacity Goals  deriving from the CDP, and should be considered as a priority;

U. whereas the consistency, coherence and mutual reinforcement between PESCO, CARD, national implementation plans (NIPs) and the CDP has to be further improved;

V. whereas the NATO Defence Planning Process (NDPP) contributes to national defence planning processes in 21 pMS which are members of NATO;

W. whereas interactions between Member States’ national priorities, EU priorities and NATO priorities should take place at the earliest possible convenience where appropriate and relevant; whereas EU and NATO priorities should be better harmonised in order to achieve EU capability targets;

X. whereas while taking into account the different nature of the two organisations and their respective responsibilities, PESCO should be an effective and complementary tool to address the capability development priorities and provide the military capabilities identified in the EU and may make a contribution to the NATO objectives;

Y. whereas in conjunction with the EU Global Strategy, a specific defence and security strategy such as the EU Security and Defence White Book suggested in numerous Parliament reports could facilitate a shared understanding of current and future challenges and provide important guidance to PESCO and the CDP deriving from an understanding of strategic ambitions and actions to be taken in the long run;

Z. whereas currently, PESCO projects are dependent on the 25 participating Member States’ financial contributions; whereas it is expected that, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, national defence budgets will suffer reductions; whereas paradoxically, several of the current 47 PESCO projects, if funded accordingly, could strengthen Member States’ preparedness, should another massive public health crisis occur: Military Mobility, the European Medical Command and many other projects in areas related to logistics and transportation, healthcare, disaster relief, preparedness against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) weapons and the fight against malicious cyber activities and hostile disinformation campaigns; whereas cutting funding for the strategic capabilities that the EU and its Member States currently lack would also weaken their ability to jointly act against future pandemics, CBRN threats and other unpredictable risks with major international impacts;

AA. whereas funding dual-use transport infrastructure will benefit both civilian and military mobility, and whereas implementing harmonised administrative procedures could lead to resources being moved through proper supply routes across the EU and help in building a common security and defence environment;

AB. whereas PESCO and the future EDF must be mutually reinforcing and whereas interlinkages between them must be further developed in order to deliver critical capabilities identified under the CDP;

AC. whereas the prospect of receiving co-financing for the research and development capacities deriving from certain PESCO projects via the future EDF has led pMS to multiply their proposals and has encouraged exchanges and cooperation; whereas all proposals must have the EU’s best common strategic interest in mind;

AD. whereas in some specific cases, the participation of third countries, provided they meet an agreed set of political, substantive and legal conditions, in individual PESCO projects might be in the strategic interest of the Union, particularly when it comes to the provision of technical expertise or additional capabilities, and in case of strategic partners; whereas any third country participation in PESCO projects should not undermine the objective of fostering the EU CSDP;

AE. whereas third country participation can only be exceptional, decided on a case-by-case basis and at the invitation of the EU Member States; whereas any such participation should provide added value to certain projects, and contribute to strengthening PESCO and the CSDP and to meeting more demanding commitments, subject to very strict conditions and on the basis of established and effective reciprocity;

AF. whereas an agreement on third country participation in PESCO projects is long overdue;

AG. whereas, with regard to the current role of the Political and Security Committee (PSC) in the context of PESCO and capability development, Parliament has already requested that ‘the mandate of the PSC referred to in Article 38 TEU needs to be interpreted narrowly’;

AH. whereas the governance of PESCO is led by pMS, possibly leading to the insufficient coordination and overall consistency of the projects; whereas an extension to the mandate of the PESCO secretariat could improve coordination;

AI. whereas the deepening of defence cooperation among Member States at EU level should go hand in hand with the strengthening of the powers of scrutiny of Member States’ parliaments and the European Parliament;

AJ. whereas the Connecting Europe Facility should focus on projects related to military mobility and interoperability, which are crucial when it comes to unexpected conflict and crisis; whereas PESCO should contribute to the creation of an effective Schengen area for military mobility, with the aim of reducing procedures at borders and keeping infrastructure burdens to a minimum; whereas the Rail Baltica project, which is vital for the integration of the Baltic countries into the European rail network, should be welcomed in this regard, and its full effectiveness should be assured;

AK. whereas PESCO can in this respect contribute to greater coherence, coordination and interoperability in security and defence, and to consolidating solidarity, cohesion and the resilience of the Union;

AL. whereas Parliament should, jointly with the Council, exercise legislative and budgetary functions, as well as functions of political control and consultation as laid down in the Treaties;

AM. whereas Parliament calls on the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy to forward his annual report on the implementation of PESCO;

AN. whereas the combined research and development efforts of pMS under PESCO will give way to significant technological breakthroughs, in turn providing the Union with a competitive edge in the areas of modern defence capabilities;

1. Recommends that the Council and the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy:

(a) inform and consult Parliament on the review of PESCO, and ensure that Parliament’s views are duly taken into consideration, in line with Article 36 of the TEU, especially in the context of the current strategic review of the first PESCO phase, which ends in 2020, in order to ensure reinforced accountability, transparency and scrutiny;

(b) implement the Union’s strategic vision and define common threats by, inter alia, implementing the level of ambition defined by the 2016 EU Global Strategy, including through the ongoing work of the Strategic Compass, which needs to be carried out in cooperation with all relevant stakeholders and institutions, and strengthen PESCO’s operational dimension;

(c) prepare, as soon as possible, on the basis of the results of the discussion on the Strategic Compass, a fully-fledged EU Security and Defence White Book; take note of the fact that the first results of the Strategic Compass are expected in the first half of 2022;

(d) ensure synergy effects and coherence between different EU defence initiatives and operations;

(e) encourage the pMS through focused proposals and adequate communication to evolve from a strictly national focus on defence to a stronger European one and to undertake structured efforts to increase the use of a European collaborative approach as a priority, as no individual pMS has the potential to address identified capacity shortfalls alone; encourage pMS and the Member States more generally not to reduce their defence spending in the coming years, and especially not their financial involvement in European cooperative projects;

(f) increase the EU’s budgetary ambition for the strengthening of defence capabilities, notably through the sufficient financing of the future EDF and Military Mobility in the upcoming multiannual financial framework (MFF);

(g) ensure that PESCO is effectively used as an instrument towards sustainable and efficient EU defence cooperation, improving the defence capabilities of pMS and interoperability as a common goal, especially in terms of availability, interoperability, flexibility and deployability of forces in line with the ambition for greater EU strategic autonomy, while maintaining close cooperation between willing pMS, increasing EU-NATO cooperation as regards EU-NATO members and maintaining close cooperation with other international partners;

(h) ensure that the funding of capacities derived from PESCO projects by the EDF is focused on a set of strategic key projects, in line with the priorities of the CDP, in order to maximise its impact; ensure that the selection of PESCO projects is in line with the High Impact Capacity Goals of the CDP;

(i) recognise that Parliament, jointly with the Council, exercises legislative and budgetary functions, as well as functions of political control and consultation as laid down in the Treaties;

(j) incorporate directly into the PESCO project cycle the link between PESCO and the European Defence Industrial Procurement Programme (EDIDP) and EDF with the aim of contributing more effectively to the achievement of the Union’s ambitions in the area of security and defence; impose the documentation of each project, before selection on the budgetary side;

(k) focus PESCO efforts on projects aimed at systematically strengthening military CSDP,

(i) which contribute to remedying significant capability shortfalls with a more operational focus, in direct response to the needs of European armed forces engaged in operations,

(ii) with a strategic and integrative dimension, such as EUFOR CROC, Military Mobility, Network of Logistic Hubs or CRRT, or

(iii) that create additional synergies and effects of scale, where appropriate;

(l) focus PESCO on constructive projects with a genuine European strategic dimension, thereby strengthening Europe’s defence industrial and technological base;

(m) underline the importance of a small number of strategic projects, in particular strategic enablers (command and control, transport, intelligence), which should be prioritised as they lay down the foundations of a more integrated European defence;

(n) take note of the fact that the creation of PESCO in the framework of the Lisbon Treaty was seen as the establishment of an avant-garde of Member States willing to pool resources and capabilities to achieve ambitious common objectives in the field of security and defence; consider the need for the Union to progressively develop a common framework under the responsibility of the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, within which the Member States would conduct their own national defence policy reviews, share results and pool intelligence as a means of establishing the foundation of a genuine European defence;

(o) recognise the value, in this regard, of the political guidelines of the Commission regarding defence policy, and in particular regarding the need for bold steps towards a genuine European Defence Union, and for an integrated and comprehensive approach to the EU’s security; take the view that the creation of a new Commission Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space should serve as a catalyst for enhanced coherence, fair cooperation and integrated coordination in the creation of defence capabilities across the Member States, as well as for strengthening EU military infrastructure and improving the efficiency of EU industry and the internal market;

(p) recognise that Parliament should play a prominent role in the scrutiny and supervision of the implementation and evaluation of the CSDP; keep Parliament fully informed and consulted in the context of the current strategic review of the first PESCO phase, which ends in 2020; take the view that increasing defence cooperation among Member States at EU level should go hand in hand with the strengthening of Parliament’s power of scrutiny;

(q) strive to ensure that key capabilities such as future key land, sea, air, cyber and other platforms for the armed forces of the Member States be brought under PESCO or at least be closely connected to it, as appropriate, in order

(i) to increase the operational readiness of military CSDP, and

(ii) to ensure that PESCO efforts are complementary to existing capabilities and are used in a manner that resolves existing shortfalls and offsets overhead expenses;

(r) formulate innovative incentives to improve the interoperability and deployment of CSDP missions and operations;

(s) increase investment in interconnecting civilian transport infrastructure that is compatible with planning for military mobility;

(t) study, as part of the reform of the EU Battlegroup (EU BG) system, whether to bring it under PESCO in order to increase its operational capacity, modularity and agility, by establishing standing multinational units dedicated to fulfilling military tasks as specified in Article 43 of the TEU and to enhancing the EU’s ability to conduct crisis management operations, including the most demanding ones such as peace-making, and to use it as a strategic over-the-horizon force;

(u) support and promote, where relevant, the grouping of PESCO projects into capability clusters and assess their strategic relevance, keeping in mind the objective of achieving a full-spectrum force package, and concentrate efforts on those that have the highest potential to deliver European strategic autonomy; review the current list of 47 projects and either cluster or cancel projects, at the discretion of pMS, which are making insufficient progress or present insufficient mutually beneficial gain to the EU;

(v) promote compliance with the 20 PESCO commitments by establishing a clear and simple definition of compliance benchmarks, and by ensuring that future project proposals address a specific EU Capability Development Priority; ensure that any reviews of project progress are based on clear and transparent criteria including when co-financed in the framework of EDIDP/future EDF; ensure that such criteria serve as indicators for all Member States participating in PESCO projects; ensure that the pMS further increase the quality and the granularity of the information provided in their National Implementation Plans, in which they outline how they intend to meet the 20 PESCO commitments;

(w) enhance the coherence of EU defence planning and development tools and initiatives; use the synergies between the PESCO project cycle and other defence capability processes such as the EU headline Goal Process, the CDP and CARD in order to enable more focused, mature, better developed and structured projects to be submitted; make sure the submission cycle enables the synchronised implementation of several European initiatives, including the EDF;

(x) encourage pMS to embed CDP into their national defence planning processes with a view to helping them to overcome capability shortcomings;

(y) reaffirm the central role of the PESCO secretariat as a single point of contact for all projects and invite the secretariat to carry out regular situation updates on the progress of projects to Parliament as well as for the benefit of all stakeholders, using information collected from the Member State(s) in charge of project coordination; encourage pMS to continue to engage in a more effective dialogue with the PESCO secretariat regarding the review and update of their National Implementation Plans;

(z) call on the pMS to ensure tangible progress in the achievement of the current PESCO projects;

(aa) clarify the role of the Political and Security Committee in the PESCO process, which is not provided for by the TEU, and ensure, in this context, the important role played by the European Union Military Committee (EUMC) in the provision of ad hoc military advice to the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy;

(ab) involve the EUMC in the work of defining a full-spectrum force package;

(ac) examine the establishment of an EU Council on Defence based on the existing Foreign Affairs Council in defence ministers format, which is also the EDA ministerial Steering Board and the PESCO format of EU Defence Ministers, in order to guarantee the prioritisation of resources and effective cooperation and integration among the Member States, as appropriate;

(ad) clarify or define the link between the governance of PESCO and that of the EDF and inform Parliament in the ex-post control process when it comes to EDF funding of PESCO projects;

(ae) consider, as requested by some pMS, changing the cycle of submission of PESCO projects with the aim of increasing the focus and maturity and improving the structure of these projects;

(af) clarify the rules governing third-party participation in PESCO, taking into consideration the importance of EU decision-making autonomy and full reciprocity and understanding that a case-by-case approach is most beneficial for the EU, taking into account

(i) the need to prepare and adopt a comprehensive and fundamental document to regulate future cooperation with third-party participation in PESCO projects, and

(ii) the fact that the decision-making process regarding the involvement of a third party should be taken at the level of each PESCO project by the Member States involved;

(ag) encourage ‘future threats’ to be used as the basis of future PESCO project proposals; strengthen partnerships with NATO, the UN, the African Union and beyond; ensure that the involvement and inclusion of SME’s is considered in all relevant aspects of PESCO projects;

(ah) ensure that PESCO projects further develop and increase the industrial capacity of pMS in the fields of nanotechnologies, super-computers, artificial intelligence, drone technology, robotics and others, in turn securing European self-reliance and independence from foreign importers in these areas, as well as facilitating the creation of new jobs;

(ai) take note of the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that the Union does not have enough competence when it comes to healthcare; recognise that in parallel, an EU common defence strategy needs to be established to respond in the event of an attack on the EU’s borders and territories, and that PESCO is a positive step towards this objective;

(aj) acknowledge the crucial role played by the European armed forces in addressing the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, both in terms of the management of the health emergency and support to civilian missions and operations, and the fact that they also have a cross-border dimension and solidarity function; see the potential benefits of new ambitious PESCO projects for the development of common European capabilities in this field, expanding on the work of previous projects, notably the Deployable Military Disaster Relief Capability Package and the European Medical Command;

(ak) call for the Council and the participating Member States to focus on cyber resilience and prepare a collective strategy and procedures to respond to cyber incidents through PESCO projects in order to create a more resilient environment within the Member States;

(al) take note of Parliament’s position on the Conference on the Future of Europe as expressed in its resolution of 15 January 2020[8], namely that security and the role of the EU in the world should be identified among pre-defined but non-exhaustive policy priorities, and recognise that this would be an opportunity to involve citizens in the debate on strengthening PESCO as a way of making progress toward an autonomous common security and defence policy for our Union;

2. Instructs its President to forward this recommendation to the Council and the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.


21.9.2020

 

 

MINORITY POSITION

 

 

pursuant to Rule 55(4) of the Rules of Procedure

Özlem Demirel

 

The report pushes through PESCO for a Military Union and calls for strengthening operational readiness of military CSDP.  It further promotes the strengthening of the industrial and technological base of European defense. The report rejects any reduction of defence spending but demands the increase of EU’s military budget for defence capabilities, notably through massive financing of the European Defence Fund (EDF) and military mobility.

We object to the report since it:

 supports further EU militarisation by aiming to strengthen the military and operational dimension of CSDP;

 Violates Article 41(2) TEU which forbids to use EU-budget for expenditure arising from operations having military or defence implications

 Supports the creation of a European military-industrial-complex by strengthening the EU’s industrial and technological base, i.a. through military budgets

 praises EU-NATO cooperation

 

We demand:

 the termination of PESCO and all military and defence related EU-programmes since with their activation/establishment and the EU’s new geostrategic and more aggressive approach the danger of war increases

 the purely civilian nature of the EU for sustainable security

 strict interpretation of article 41(2) TEU that prohibits to use the EU-budget for military or defence operations;

 radical (including nuclear) disarmament on EU and global levels


 

 

 

 

OPINION OF THE COMMITTEE ON CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS (2.9.2020)

<CommissionInt>for the Committee on Foreign Affairs</CommissionInt>


<Titre>on the recommendation to the Council and the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy concerning the implementation and governance of Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO)</Titre>

<DocRef>(2020/2080(INI))</DocRef>

Rapporteur for opinion: <Depute>Esteban González Pons</Depute>

 

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Constitutional Affairs calls on the Committee on Foreign Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions into its motion for a resolution:

1. Highlights that PESCO significantly contributes to the convergence of actions by Member States in the area of common foreign and security policy and represents an important step towards achieving the Treaty objective of common defence;

2. Welcomes the interest of Member States in PESCO following its establishment by Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/2315 of 11 December 2017, as shown by the significant number of projects established so far by the Council under PESCO; encourages participating Member States to advance this work and focus on the swift and effective implementation of these projects while ensuring the participation of all Member States; recalls, nevertheless, that PESCO also involves 20 binding commitments that have received far less attention;

3. Welcomes the inclusiveness of PESCO, as reflected in the high number of Member States involved in its projects; is of the opinion that PESCO should favour low entry criteria and be accessible to Member States that are small and/or have low defence budgets;

4. Highlights that the creation of PESCO in the framework of the Lisbon Treaty was seen as the establishment of an avant-garde of Member States willing to pool resources and capabilities to achieve ambitious common objectives in the field of security and defence; considers it necessary for the Union to progressively develop a common framework under the responsibility of the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (VP/HR), within which the Member States would conduct their own national defence policy reviews, share results and pool intelligence as a means of establishing the foundation of a genuine European defence;

5. Calls on the Council and the Member States to continue reinforcing coherence between all instruments and initiatives within the framework of common security and defence policy (CSDP) in order to achieve the required level of effectiveness in ensuring strategic autonomy, and of ambition in the progressive framing of a common Union defence policy in line with the TEU; considers that PESCO needs ambitious projects, in synergy with the CARD, NIPs and the CDP, to deal with present-day threats, and underlines, in this regard, the importance of maintaining an adequate level of financing of the EDF and military mobility in the context of the MFF negotiations; points out the necessity of developing a system of genuine Union own resources as a means of enabling the alignment of the Union’s strategic objectives in the field of defence, with funding for programmes and operations on the ground, notably PESCO projects;

6. Calls on the Commission to work on an EU defence and security white book with a view to better aligning specific PESCO project objectives with an updated, coherent and comprehensive EU security and defence strategy; highlights, in this regard, the importance of the PESCO 2020 strategic review and likewise supports the establishment of a European strategic compass to improve the ability to coordinate Member State defence initiatives that contribute to the common objectives of the Union in a more timely and effective manner;

7. Notes that the COVID-19 pandemic has shown the Union does not have enough competence when it comes to health care; believes that in parallel, an EU common defence strategy needs to be established to respond in the event of an attack on the EU’s borders and territories, and considers PESCO a positive step towards this objective;

8. Welcomes in this regard the political guidelines of the Commission regarding defence policy, and in particular regarding the need for bold steps towards a genuine European Defence Union, and for an integrated and comprehensive approach to the EU’s security; hopes that the creation of a new Commission Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space will serve as a catalyst for enhanced coherence, fair cooperation and integrated coordination in the creation of defence capabilities across the Member States, as well as for strengthening EU military infrastructure and improving the efficiency of EU industry and the internal market;

9. Considers it necessary to step up the actual contribution of PESCO projects to the achievement of the EU’s ambitions in the area of security and defence, by effectively ensuring that the participating Member States strengthen their collaboration and coordination in significant and ambitious capability development, and that there is coherence between the EU and NATO in terms of priorities, enhanced interoperability and synergies;

10. Acknowledges the crucial role played by the European armed forces in addressing the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, both in terms of the management of the health emergency and support to civilian missions and operations, and the fact that they also have a cross-border dimension and solidarity function; highlights the potential benefits of new ambitious PESCO projects for the development of common European capabilities in this field, expanding on the work of previous projects, notably the Deployable Military Disaster Relief Capability Package and the European Medical Command;

11. Welcomes the synergy between different EU defence tools and underlines the need to ensure coherence; stresses that a special bonus for PESCO projects under the EDF could have a positive effect as it would incentivise cooperation in the development of capabilities;

12. Calls on the participating Member States to continue making resources available for PESCO projects, while ensuring real ownership of and commitment to PESCO coordinating and pooling processes, especially since no effective compliance mechanism for PESCO is in place; underlines that PESCO should provide a framework to go beyond bilateral cooperation and foster a truly European effort through the meaningful participation of multiple Member States in common projects;

13. Underlines the importance of a small number of strategic projects, in particular strategic enablers (command and control, transport, intelligence); calls on the Council and the PESCO secretariat to consider a cluster structure for PESCO projects in order to guarantee the maximum level of synergy among different projects;

14. Calls on the Council to define strict conditions for the participation of third states in PESCO projects, in accordance with Article 9 of Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/2315; considers that any such participation should not deviate PESCO from its fundamental objectives as an instrument of the EU CSDP, while respecting the obligations under the North Atlantic Treaty;

15. Warns, however, about the risk of foreign interference in the Union’s security and defence, which often takes the form of cyber threats or other types of hybrid warfare; suggests that Parliament’s newly established special committee on foreign interference in all democratic processes in the European Union should collaborate with the Commission and the Council in analysing how PESCO projects could strengthen the Union’s resilience against these types of threats;

16. Believes that the involvement of the United Kingdom in PESCO projects, where invited and where effective reciprocity is ensured, would be in the strategic interest of the Union; expresses its hope that the area of defence will be covered in the EU-UK negotiations on their future relationship, in line with the Political Declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom;

17. Reiterates that Parliament should play a prominent role in the scrutiny and supervision of the implementation and evaluation of the CSDP; expects in this regard that Parliament will be fully informed and consulted by VP/HR in the context of the current strategic review of the first PESCO phase, which ends in 2020; recalls that increasing defence cooperation among Member States at EU level should go hand in hand with the strengthening of Parliament’s power of scrutiny;

18. Calls on the Council and the participating Member States to focus on cyber resilience and prepare a collective strategy and procedures to respond to cyber incidents through PESCO projects in order to create a more resilient environment within the Member States;

19. Recalls Parliament’s position on the Conference on the Future of Europe as expressed in its resolution of 15 January 2020[9], namely that security and the role of the EU in the world should be identified among pre-defined but non-exhaustive policy priorities, and reiterates that this would be an opportunity to involve citizens in the debate on strengthening PESCO as a way of making progress toward an autonomous common security and defence policy for our Union.


INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

Date adopted

1.9.2020

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

18

7

3

Members present for the final vote

Gerolf Annemans, Gabriele Bischoff, Damian Boeselager, Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield, Daniel Freund, Charles Goerens, Esteban González Pons, Brice Hortefeux, Laura Huhtasaari, Giuliano Pisapia, Paulo Rangel, Antonio Maria Rinaldi, Domènec Ruiz Devesa, Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, Helmut Scholz, Pedro Silva Pereira, Antonio Tajani, László Trócsányi, Mihai Tudose, Loránt Vincze, Rainer Wieland

Substitutes present for the final vote

Gilles Boyer, Jorge Buxadé Villalba, Cristian Ghinea, Maite Pagazaurtundúa, Nikolaj Villumsen

 

 


FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

 

18

+

NI

Fabio Massimo Castaldo

PPE

Esteban González Pons, Brice Hortefeux, Paulo Rangel, Antonio Tajani, László Trócsányi, Loránt Vincze, Rainer Wieland

RENEW

Gilles Boyer, Cristian Ghinea, Charles Goerens, Maite Pagazaurtundúa

S&D

Gabriele Bischoff, Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, Giuliano Pisapia, Domènec Ruiz Devesa, Pedro Silva Pereira, Mihai Tudose

 

 

 

7

-

ECR

Jorge Buxadé Villalba, Jacek Saryusz Wolski

GUE/NGL

Helmut Scholz, Nikolaj Villumsen

ID

Gerolf Annemans, Laura Huhtasaari, Antonio Maria Rinaldi

 

 

 

3

0

VERTS/ALE

Damian Boeselager, Gwendoline Delbos Corfield, Daniel Freund

 


 

INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

Date adopted

21.9.2020

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

48

11

9

Members present for the final vote

Alviina Alametsä, Alexander Alexandrov Yordanov, Maria Arena, Petras Auštrevičius, Traian Băsescu, Anna Bonfrisco, Reinhard Bütikofer, Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, Katalin Cseh, Tanja Fajon, Anna Fotyga, Michael Gahler, Kinga Gál, Sunčana Glavak, Raphaël Glucksmann, Klemen Grošelj, Bernard Guetta, Márton Gyöngyösi, Sandra Kalniete, Dietmar Köster, Andrius Kubilius, Ilhan Kyuchyuk, David Lega, Miriam Lexmann, Nathalie Loiseau, Antonio López-Istúriz White, Lukas Mandl, Thierry Mariani, David McAllister, Vangelis Meimarakis, Sven Mikser, Francisco José Millán Mon, Javier Nart, Gheorghe-Vlad Nistor, Urmas Paet, Demetris Papadakis, Kostas Papadakis, Tonino Picula, Manu Pineda, Kati Piri, Giuliano Pisapia, Jérôme Rivière, María Soraya Rodríguez Ramos, Nacho Sánchez Amor, Isabel Santos, Andreas Schieder, Radosław Sikorski, Jordi Solé, Sergei Stanishev, Tineke Strik, Hermann Tertsch, Harald Vilimsky, Idoia Villanueva Ruiz, Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel, Thomas Waitz, Charlie Weimers, Isabel Wiseler-Lima, Salima Yenbou, Željana Zovko

Substitutes present for the final vote

Özlem Demirel, Angel Dzhambazki, Assita Kanko, Arba Kokalari, Dragoş Tudorache, Mick Wallace, Elena Yoncheva, Marco Zanni

 


FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

48

+

EPP

Alexander Alexandrov Yordanov, Traian Băsescu, Michael Gahler, Kinga Gál, Sunčana Glavak, Sandra Kalniete, Arba Kokalari, Andrius Kubilius, David Lega, Miriam Lexmann, Antonio López‑Istúriz White, Lukas Mandl, David McAllister, Vangelis Meimarakis, Francisco José Millán Mon, Gheorghe‑Vlad Nistor, Radosław Sikorski, Isabel Wiseler‑Lima, Željana Zovko

S&D

Maria Arena, Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, Tanja Fajon, Raphaël Glucksmann, Sven Mikser, Demetris Papakadis, Tonino Picula, Kati Piri, Giuliano Pisapia, Nacho Sánchez Amor, Isabel Santos, Andreas Schieder, Sergei Stanishev. Elena Yoncheva

RENEW

Petras Auštrevičius, Katalin Cseh, Klemen Grošelj, Bernard Guetta, Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Nathalie Loiseau, Javier Nart, Urmas Paet, María Soraya Rodríguez Ramos, Ioan-DragosTudorache

ECR

Angel Dzhambazki, Anna Fotyga, Assita Kanko

NI

Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Márton Gyöngyösi

 

11

-

S&D

Dietmar Köster

ID

Thierry Mariani, Jérôme Rivière, Harald Vilimsky

ECR

Hermann Tertsch, Charlie Weimers

GUE

Özlem Demirel, Manu Pineda, Idoia Villanueva Ruiz, Mick Wallace

NI

Kostas Papadakis

 

9

0

ID

Anna Bonfrisco, Marco Zanni

VERTS

Alviina Alametsä, Reinhard Bütikofer, Jordi Solé, Tineke Strik, Viola Von Cramon‑Taubadel, Thomas Waitz, Salima Yenbou

 

Key to symbols:

+ : in favour

- : against

0 : abstention

 

 

[1] OJ L 331, 14.12.2017, p. 57.

[2] OJ L 65, 8.3.2018, p. 24.

[3] OJ L 161, 26.6.2018, p. 37.

[4] OJ L 294, 21.11.2018, p. 18.

[5] OJ L 293, 14.11.2019, p. 113.

[6] OJ C 374, 16.10.2018, p. 1.

[7] OJ C 263, 25.7.2018, p. 125.

[8] Texts adopted, P9_TA(2020)0010.

[9] Texts adopted, P9_TA(2020)0010.

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