As the European Union’s Council and Commission Presidents hold a summit with U.S. President Joe Biden in Washington DC, the European Defence Agency and the U.S. Department of Defense are deepening transatlantic cooperation through broad cooperation.
At the last EU-US Summit in June 2021, EU and US leaders committed to working towards an Administrative Arrangement between the European Defence Agency (EDA) and the US Department of Defense (DoD).
Based on the mandate from the Member States, EDA and the U.S. DoD signed their Administrative Arrangement in April 2023 following successful negotiations.
As highlighted by the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell, who is also Head of the Agency, the EDA-U.S. DoD Administrative Arrangement provides another pillar to strengthen transatlantic cooperation and the link between the EU and the U.S.
Following the signing of the AA, the cooperation has been initiated in various work strands, namely
- Supply chains
- Military mobility
- Chemical regulations, such as REACH
- The impact of climate change on defence
In addition to expert consultations, the AA foresees opportunities for high level dialogues with Member States. The first occurrence took place in late September 2023, when Michael Vaccaro, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Industrial Base Policy at the U.S. DoD, held informal talks on supply chain issues with the National Armament Directors of EU Member States, in a meeting chaired by EDA.
Last week, Dr. William LaPlante, the United States Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment and EDA’s Chief Executive Jiří Šedivý met to take stock of the implementation of the AA and continue the substantial defence dialogue on selected topics within the Agency’s area of expertise.
Both meetings provided an opportunity to take forward concrete cooperation within the AA.
As like-minded partners that share a commitment to a rules-based international order, particularly in support of Ukraine following Russia’s war of aggression, EDA and the U.S. Department of Defense are working through all areas of the AA to share information and deepen transatlantic defence cooperation at expert level.
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