EDA Chief Executive Jiří Šedivý was in Cyprus this week (11-12 October) for meetings with Defence Minister Charalambos Petrides and Chief of Defence, Lieutenant General Dimokritos Zervakis. He also had talks with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikos Christodoulides. The visit was part of the CE’s ongoing ‘tour des capitales’ which has him visiting all 26 EDA Member States.
The ongoing work on the EU’s Strategic Compass, the implementation of the recommendations made in the first Coordinated Annual Review on Defence (CARD), the state of play of the various PESCO projects with Cypriot participation, EDA’s current and future role as the European hub for collaborative capability development and driver of defence innovation, Cyprus’ involvement in EDA projects and programmes as well as EU-NATO cooperation were among the main topics discussed. The Agency’s practical support to CSDP missions and operations was also discussed, with a particular focus on maritime surveillance (MARSUR project).
Mr Sedivy also had a discussion with representatives from Cypriot R&D companies and entities involved in EDA and EDIDP projects. He also visited the KIOS Centre of Excellence at the University of Cyprus.
“I had the opportunity to express to Minister Petrides and Chief of Defence Lt General Zervakis my sincere appreciation for the fact that Cyprus is not only a very active stakeholder and contributor to EDA projects and programmes, but also a constant and committed supporter of deeper European defence cooperation. I am thankful for the good and positive talks I had over the past two days with all my interlocutors and look forward to continuing the Agency’s close cooperation with Cyprus”, Mr Šedivý commented.
“Jiří Šedivý’s visit to Cyprus was really timely in the midst of the ongoing discussions and deliberations on the various defence related European initiatives. We had the chance to exchange views on an array of issues of mutual interest, including on Cyprus’ contribution and active engagement with the EDA and in a number of defence capabilities projects. I also highlighted the important role and contribution of the EDA to this end and the significant added value and experience that the Agency to the benefit of the European defence industry, research and technology. Following our joint meeting with Cypriot companies and research centres involved in EDA and EDIDP projects, I am confident that we will be able to increase Cypriot participation in future projects”, Minister Petrides added.
Climate Change and Security Conference
On Monday (11 October), Minister Petrides and the EDA Chief Executive jointly inaugurated the Climate Change and Security Conference organised by the European Security and Defence College (ESDC) and the Cyprus Institute.