This paper examines the proposals on European defence under discussion during the 2008 French EU Presidency. While Americans and Europeans alike support stronger EU-NATO cooperation, the output has so far been unsatisfactory. The paper examines initiatives for a stronger, more unitary European security structure.
EU governments are gradually coming around to the idea that they need to open up their defence markets. The European Commission is currently proposing new procurement and trade directives aimed at streamlining defence market legislation. The proposed directives would open up the defence market, improve European cooperation on armaments and lead to a more competitive European defence industry.
Cooperative programmes do not have a very positive image in some EU Member States because they have often implied delays, unanticipated costs, and long rounds of negotiations between partnering nations. Participating in a multinational programme without a shared approach and common understanding is bound to lead to problems.
This Occasional Paper explores the issue of European armaments cooperation. Such cooperation between countries has often been difficult. Even so, European governments continue to collaborate on multinational equipment programmes for a number of reasons, and successful multinational programmes have manifold benefits.
Up until now, EU member states have excluded armaments from the European integration process and have cooperated in this field outside the EU framework. However, there is a fair chance today that this will change: both the work of the Convention on the Future of Europe and the debate on the recent Commission Communication on a common defence equipment policy indicate a greater openness among national governments vis-à-vis possible EU involvement in armaments.
The work of the Convention on the Future of Europe and the final report of its working group on defence have illustrated that armaments might well become one of the key issues on the agenda of the next Intergovernmental Conference (IGC). The purpose of this Chaillot Paper is to provide practitioners, experts and policy-makers with necessary background information.
Aiming to reach operational status in 2008, the Galileo satellite system is planned to offer positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) services worldwide. It will join the ranks of the current GPS and GLONASS systems, allowing users to pinpoint their exact locations.
Daniel Keohane explores the changing context of Irish defence policy in light of the rapid development of the CESDP. He touches on policy considerations germane to all EU member-states with a tradition of neutrality who are having to adjust to a new role in a changing world. Keohane also uses defence policy as a metaphor for the changing internal debate at a time when a strong and polemical discourse is underway about Ireland’s role in the wider world.
The first session focused on threat perceptions and threat assessments. The key question was whether a threat exists that justifies NMD deployment. Do the so-called ‘countries of concern’ really intent to threaten the US homeland and, even more importantly, do they have the financial and the technological means to scale up their existing arsenal to true intercontinental range?