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European Defence Fund 2021–2027

21-04-2021

The European Commission presented a proposal for a regulation establishing a European Defence Fund in June 2018. The Fund aims to foster the competitiveness and innovativeness of European defence and to contribute to the EU's strategic autonomy. The Parliament and Council reached a partial agreement in early 2019 and then a provisional political agreement on the outstanding issues in December 2020. The Council adopted its first-reading position in March 2021, and the Parliament is expected to vote ...

The European Commission presented a proposal for a regulation establishing a European Defence Fund in June 2018. The Fund aims to foster the competitiveness and innovativeness of European defence and to contribute to the EU's strategic autonomy. The Parliament and Council reached a partial agreement in early 2019 and then a provisional political agreement on the outstanding issues in December 2020. The Council adopted its first-reading position in March 2021, and the Parliament is expected to vote its second-reading position during the April plenary session.

Russia's armed forces: Defence capabilities and policy

10-03-2021

Reforms launched under Vladimir Putin have restored some of the Russian armed forces' former glory. Russia now has a streamlined, mobile and mostly professional military, equipped with modern weapons. The impact of these changes was visible in Syria, Russia's first military intervention outside the post-Soviet region. Despite this increased capability, there are demographic and financial constraints on Russian military power. The armed forces are not attracting enough recruits to go fully professional ...

Reforms launched under Vladimir Putin have restored some of the Russian armed forces' former glory. Russia now has a streamlined, mobile and mostly professional military, equipped with modern weapons. The impact of these changes was visible in Syria, Russia's first military intervention outside the post-Soviet region. Despite this increased capability, there are demographic and financial constraints on Russian military power. The armed forces are not attracting enough recruits to go fully professional, and therefore still need conscripts – who are less well-trained than career soldiers – to make up the numbers. Moscow has spent billions of dollars on new weapons, such as the innovative nuclear missiles unveiled by President Putin in 2018, but not all branches of the armed forces are equally well equipped. Russia's increasingly assertive foreign policy raises the question of how much of a threat its military represents. Officially, the role of the armed forces is to defend Russian territory, but in practice Moscow uses military force to assert control over its post-Soviet sphere of influence, for example in Ukraine. Russia also uses hybrid methods such as cyber-attacks, including against North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) countries. NATO's overall numerical superiority means that Russia is likely to avoid all-out war with the alliance. However, the risk that it might use nuclear weapons and other niche strengths to escape retaliation for a limited attack (for example in the Baltic region) cannot be entirely discounted.

The EU’s Defence Technological and Industrial Base

10-01-2020

The EU’s Defence Technological and Industrial Base (EDTIB) has been a key focus of EU policy efforts in recent years, not just for security reasons, but also for economic ones. There have been a host of funds to strengthen and reinforce the EDTIB, and to ensure deeper cooperation, avoid duplication and underscore the interoperability of equipment. These funding streams have not been fully evaluated, but they are important symbols of the energy and commitment with which the EU has attempted to create ...

The EU’s Defence Technological and Industrial Base (EDTIB) has been a key focus of EU policy efforts in recent years, not just for security reasons, but also for economic ones. There have been a host of funds to strengthen and reinforce the EDTIB, and to ensure deeper cooperation, avoid duplication and underscore the interoperability of equipment. These funding streams have not been fully evaluated, but they are important symbols of the energy and commitment with which the EU has attempted to create an integrated pan-EU defence industry. There have, however, been challenges. The EU Member States remain predisposed to procuring weapons nationally or internationally, rather than regionally. There is a question as to whether these funds are great enough to be genuinely transformative, or whether in practice they are insufficient in relation to investment in the domestic defence industries. Finally, efforts to integrate the EDTIB also risk the EU being seen as protectionist, which may lead other major weapons suppliers such as the US to respond in kind.

Externe auteur

Dr Benedict Wilkinson, Associate Director of the Policy Institute, King’s College London, UK

10 YEARS OF CSDP - Four in-depth analyses requested by the Sub-Committee on Security and Defence of the European Parliament (EP)

10-01-2020

This policy brief provides an overview of what the EU has done through its Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) missions and operations since 2003, and which achievements and challenges it faces at the end of EU High Representative/Vice-President (HR/VP) Federica Mogherini’s mandate. It evaluates how the overall political context and the EU’s approach have evolved over time, and how this has affected the launch and implementation of CSDP actions. It looks at a range of criteria for evaluating ...

This policy brief provides an overview of what the EU has done through its Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) missions and operations since 2003, and which achievements and challenges it faces at the end of EU High Representative/Vice-President (HR/VP) Federica Mogherini’s mandate. It evaluates how the overall political context and the EU’s approach have evolved over time, and how this has affected the launch and implementation of CSDP actions. It looks at a range of criteria for evaluating the success of missions and operations such as effectiveness, degree of match between mission launch and EU interests at stake, responsiveness, coherence with wider policy strategies, coherence with values and norms, and degree of democratic scrutiny and oversight. It assesses some of the achievements as well as shortcomings of previous and ongoing missions and operations against these objectives. The brief identifies three underlying and cross-cutting problems hampering performance: (i) incompatible attitudes among Member States towards the use of force; (ii) resource disincentives and barriers to timely European solidarity; and (iii) gaps between early warning and early action. It outlines some selected initiatives launched and options discussed to address these shortcomings and improve the EU’s performance in crisis management operations.

Externe auteur

Christoph O. Meyer, Professor of European & International Politics, King’s College London, UK

EU Defence: The White Book implementation process

12-12-2018

The question of a defence White Book at European level has been under discussion for some time. Many voices, particularly in the European Parliament, are pushing for such an initiative, while others consider that it is not only unnecessary, but could even dangerously divide Europeans. Concretely, the question cannot be tackled separately from that of defence planning and processes which underpin the development of military capabilities, as White Books are often the starting point for these. Within ...

The question of a defence White Book at European level has been under discussion for some time. Many voices, particularly in the European Parliament, are pushing for such an initiative, while others consider that it is not only unnecessary, but could even dangerously divide Europeans. Concretely, the question cannot be tackled separately from that of defence planning and processes which underpin the development of military capabilities, as White Books are often the starting point for these. Within the European Union, however, there is not just one, but three types defence planning: the national planning of each of the Member States; planning within the framework of NATO (the NATO Defence Planning Process) and, finally, the European Union’s planning, which has developed in stages since the Helsinki summit of 1999 and comprises many elements. Its best-known component - but by no means not the only one - is the capability development plan established by the European Defence Agency. How do all these different planning systems coexist? What are their strengths and weaknesses? Answering these preliminary questions is essential in mapping the path to a White Book. This is what this study sets out to do.

Externe auteur

Mr Frédéric MAURO

Establishing the European Defence Fund

26-10-2018

One of a number of MFF-related impact assessment reports, this IA provides a comprehensive overview of the problems facing European defence development, as well as the general objectives that the proposed European Defence Fund is meant to address. It would nevertheless have gained by including a more detailed explanation behind the merger of the two financing windows, as well as a more detailed analysis of impacts. Finally, the lack of more specific objectives appears to have weakened the analysis ...

One of a number of MFF-related impact assessment reports, this IA provides a comprehensive overview of the problems facing European defence development, as well as the general objectives that the proposed European Defence Fund is meant to address. It would nevertheless have gained by including a more detailed explanation behind the merger of the two financing windows, as well as a more detailed analysis of impacts. Finally, the lack of more specific objectives appears to have weakened the analysis of monitoring mechanisms and it is unclear how stakeholders' views have fed into the analysis.

The further development of the Common Position 944/2008/CFSP on arms exports control

16-07-2018

In view of the upcoming review of the EU Common Position 944/2008/CFSP on arms exports, the aim of the workshop was to provide an overview of the context in which this process will take place together with a set of possible outcomes the review could produce. The speakers from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), first defined the context by describing how, since the EU Common Position was adopted in 2008, EU member states performed in terms of military expenditure, arms production ...

In view of the upcoming review of the EU Common Position 944/2008/CFSP on arms exports, the aim of the workshop was to provide an overview of the context in which this process will take place together with a set of possible outcomes the review could produce. The speakers from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), first defined the context by describing how, since the EU Common Position was adopted in 2008, EU member states performed in terms of military expenditure, arms production and arms transfers. Recent measures adopted at the EU level to boost defence industrial cooperation were also indicated as part of this framework. The speakers also highlighted the divergences in member states’ export policies which emerged in the last decade, most recently during the conflict in Yemen. They then provided a number of options that could be taken into consideration during the 2018 review, covering both adjustments to the language of the criteria and the user’s guide and measures to improve the implementation of the EU Common Position, the quality of reporting and to increase coherence and coordination of the EU export control regime.

Externe auteur

Dr. Sibylle BAUER, Mark BROMLEY, Giovanna MALETTA – Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI)

Permanent structured cooperation (PESCO): From notification to establishment

08-12-2017

On 13 November 2017, 23 EU Member States signed a joint notification addressed to the Council and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission (HR/VP) on their intention to participate in PESCO. The Council is now expected to formally establish PESCO, possibly before the end of the year.

On 13 November 2017, 23 EU Member States signed a joint notification addressed to the Council and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy