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EDA Annual Conference: key quotes (morning session)

Brussels - 31 January, 2012

  • "In these hard financial times, it would be all too easy to conclude that we have no option but to cut military capabilities. But difficult times call for imaginative politics and new approaches. Pooling & Sharing allows Defence Ministries to collectively benefit rather wither alone". Mr. Pieter de Crem, Minister of Defence, Belgium (keynote speech).
  • "Austerity is a challenge we cannot duck, we must confront and overcome. The only way to do so is through cooperation", Ms. Catherine Ashton, Head of EDA (opening address).
  • "If Europe is to be a credible player in the world, it requires more than just soft power. Military capabilities matter and that is why pooling and sharing – allowing the development of key capabilities with limited resources – is so important". Ms. Catherine Ashton, Head of EDA (opening address).
  • "The austerity does not necessarily have to weaken us. Quite the contrary – it can bond us and set a new course for a more effective defence cooperation". Ms. Claude-France Arnould, EDA Chief Executive (welcome address).
  • "We have a political impulse, and economical constraints: we must now accelerate. It is of upmost importance that we turn this impulse into concrete results". Ms. Claude-France Arnould, EDA Chief Executive (press point).


For more quotes, follow EDA's Twitter (@EUDefenceAgency). Speeches will be posted shortly, together with the Conference report.

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Participating Member States

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Czech
  • Germany
  • Estonia
  • Ireland
  • Greece
  • Spain
  • France
  • Croatia
  • Italy
  • Cyprus
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Hungary
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Austria
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovenia
  • Slovakia
  • Finland
  • Sweden
  • UK