The European Defence Agency supports the first Central and Eastern European (CEE) Armaments Cooperation Course which takes place in Prague from 13-16 March 2018, gathering some 30 delegates from 10 CEE Member States. Sponsored and led by the Czech Republic and delivered by Cranfield University’s Centre for Defence Acquisition, the course will strengthen the practical skills of staff from CEE Ministries of Defence (MoDs) and related agencies in defence procurement procedures, with an emphasis on multinational collaboration.
The 2013 European Council stressed the need for a balanced access to defence industry in Europe, as a result of which EDA conducted an internal analysis of the specificities of the CEE countries’ defence industries and commissioned a study from RAND Europe to better understand the barriers to defence cooperation across Europe. The study identified several areas of concern and noted that the CEE countries face a common challenge in accessing the skills needed to pursue defence collaboration opportunities, with identified shortfalls in areas such as project and programme management, marketing and networking, market intelligence and business planning.
The course represents a tangible and tailor-made opportunity for CEE Member States to improve their capacity in all these areas . It comes at a time of transformational change across the European defence landscape with the advent of several new initiatives such as the Coordinated Annual Review on Defence (CARD), Permanent Structure Cooperation (PESCO) and the European Defence Fund (EDF). It will serve as a springboard for the CEE countries to participate more effectively in collaboration efforts and will underpin an alumni network that will provide on-going advice on best practice and longer term networking opportunities.
The course is designed for military and civilian officials working on defence acquisition issues.