France welcomes progress towards Defence Europe
Paris, 19 November 2018
The Minister for the Armed Forces, Florence Parly, is currently taking part in the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council of 19 and 20 November 2018. It has provided an opportunity, among other things, to officially launch 17 new projects for Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO). This tool, created a year ago, strengthens Defence Europe through the development of concrete projects.
France has strongly committed itself to ensuring that this new series of projects is as ambitious as possible. We are thus involved in 11 projects and have ourselves initiated five of them, which will contribute directly to increased military capability in Europe.
This is notably the case of the project to modernize the Tiger, the attack helicopter used every day by Operation Barkhane in the fight against terrorism in the Sahel. Developed in cooperation with Germany and Spain, the project will allow the aircraft’s equipment to be modernized and improve its integration into future combat systems by enabling it, among other things, to synchronize its action with drones.
The development of a project for medium-range, ground-to-ground and air-to-ground, missile-type anti-tank weaponry is also part of this process. This weaponry is set to equip foot soldiers, combat vehicles and drones.
All these projects should ultimately enable us to act together more easily and effectively in joint operations. This is particularly the case with the “co-basing” project, which will facilitate the deployment of contingents from different European countries on the same operational base.
Thanks to these projects, we are taking another step towards a stronger Defence Europe capable of protecting European citizens. Florence Parly welcomes the progress made by all the member states in Brussels today, which shows that the European Union is also a practical Europe./.