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Council approves Administrative Arrangement between EDA and United States

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The Council today approved the draft administrative arrangement between the European Defence Agency (EDA) and the United States Department of Defence (US DoD) with a view to its signature.

The purpose of this arrangement is to provide a framework to exchange information and explore opportunities for cooperation between EDA and the US DoD. An initial scope of such cooperation includes:

  • Forum of exchange and dialogue: the administrative arrangement will enable a substantial defence dialogue on all topics within EDA’s remit, and invitations for U.S. DoD to attend relevant meetings of EDA’s Steering Board and vice versa.
  • Specific activities such as: consultations on the registration of chemical substances (e.g., EU REACH regulation), military mobility, supply chain issues and the impact of climate change on defence. The cooperation also includes participation in the open sessions of the European Defence Standardisation Committee.

The scope of cooperation may, upon mutual consent, progressively develop in the future. Currently, activities falling under the areas of capability development, as well as research and technology remain outside the scope of cooperation.

The arrangement confirms the significance of the transatlantic partnership in security and defence and reflects the importance of a stronger and more capable European defence that contributes to global and transatlantic security and is complementary to NATO.

Background and next steps

In the EU-U.S. 2021 Summit Statement, leaders committed to work towards an administrative arrangement for the United States with the European Defence Agency.

On 16 November 2021, the EDA Steering Board gave the mandate to the Head of the Agency to negotiate the arrangement, and on 9 December 2022, a draft proposal for an administrative arrangement was submitted to the Defence Ministers in the EDA Steering Board.

The arrangement will enter into effect on the date of the signature by the parties.