Ministry of Defense delegation at the Annual Conference of the European Defence Agency
Delegation of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Serbia, headed by Acting Assistant Minister of Defense for Material Resources, Nenad Miloradović, PhD attended the European Defense Agency’s Annual Conference in Brussels.
The Conference entitled “Taking European Defence Cooperation to the Next Level – Prospects for the decade ahead” was opened by European Defence Agency Chief Executive, Ambassador Jorge Domecq, and European Commission Chief Negotiator for Bregzit, Michel Barnier and Chairman of the European Union Military Committee, General Claudio Graziano addressed the Conference.
During the Conference, current issues of implementation of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), the Coordinated Annual Defence Review (CARD) and the European Defence Fund (EDF) were discussed as key initiatives to strengthen the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy. The strategic importance of defense technologies and the defense industry is particularly emphasized in the efforts to overcome, as soon as possible, European defense initiatives in the vast gap between the capabilities of the US and Asian defense industries, due to their long-standing disproportion in investment and development. In this regard, agreement was reached on the need to ensure smooth and efficient interaction and coherence, both within the above mentioned initiatives and at the level of the competent European institutions, including the newly created Directorate-General for the defense industry and space.
During the Conference, the potential of the European technology and industrial base to provide full support for the development of the military capabilities necessary to reach the levels of ambition derived from the European Union’s Global Security and Defense Strategy was also examined.
On the sidelines of the Conference, Assistant Minister Miloradović spoke with Ambassador Domeq and General Graziano in separate meetings. On this occasion, they expressed mutual satisfaction as regards the cooperation with the European Defense Agency so far, as well as the willingness to raise the cooperation to a higher level in the coming period. General Graziano emphasized the importance of Serbia’s contribution to the missions and operations of the Common Security and Defence Policy for crisis management and expressed satisfaction with the results of a recent visit to our country.
Assistant Minister Miloradović also met with Éric Béranger, the CEO of the European company MBDA, who discussed the possibilities of further improving industrial and engineering cooperation regarding the integration of the MISTRAL missile system into the PASARS system.
The potential of further deepening industrial cooperation in the light of the views expressed at the Conference on the further development of the European defense technologies was also discussed. Furthermore, in an exchange with the Hungarian Deputy National Director of Arms, László Tömböl, mutual interest was expressed in intensifying defense-industrial cooperation in the field of sophisticated weapons development as well as equipping of aviation platforms.
In a meeting with Vice-Admiral Eric Chaperon, French Military Representative to the European Union, our country was assessed as a credible partner in peace and security building at the regional and global levels.
Member of the delegation of the Republic of Serbia at the Conference was also the Head of the Military Mission in the Mission of the Republic of Serbia to NATO, Brigadier General Predrag Bandić.