EDA Chief Executive Jorge Domecq met with Miloš Bizjak, the State Secretary at the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Slovenia, to exchange views ahead of the June 2015 European Council and to discuss Slovenia’s participation in EDA projects.
Slovenia sees a central role of EDA in coordinating, supporting and promoting cooperative defence projects, and expects added value in better implementing proposals to enhance capability development. Priority should be on development of capabilities, including niche capabilities, in accordance with the operational requirements at the national, EU and NATO levels.
“Slovenia appreciates the efforts of the EDA and welcomes the discussions ahead of the next 2015 European Council on defence. It is of vital importance that smaller industries and entities have better access to the European defence market. Inclusion of small and medium-sized enterprises in the market will help reduce fragmentation, increase competitiveness and provide opportunities for joint access and performance on the market”, said State Secretary Miloš Bizjak.
“The current security environment requires Europe to send strong signals confirming its commitment to defence. What European defence needs today is political will and a strong, innovative and competitive defence industry to secure our strategic autonomy. The further development of the defence industry requires among others common capability programmes and investment in research and technology.
In this respect, the European Defence Agency remains a strong instrument at the disposal of Member States. One way we can support Slovenia, its defence industry and especially small and medium sized enterprises is for example in facilitating access to markets in Europe through EU funding and market information The discussions by Heads of States and Government in June should give an important boost and top-level guidance”, said Jorge Domecq during his visit in Ljubljana.
The visit included meetings with other high-level officials of the Slovenian Ministry of Defence as well as the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia. It is part of a series of visits by Mr. Domecq to all EDA Member States following his appointment as EDA Chief Executive and ahead of the Ministerial Steering Board on 18 May 2015. So far, Mr. Domecq visited Spain, Lithuania, Latvia, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, Portugal, the Netherlands, Ireland, France, Romania, Bulgaria, and the Czech Republic.
Copyright picture: Ministry of Defence, Slovenia