Log in

Login to your account

Username *
Password *
Remember Me

Create an account

Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.
Name *
Username *
Password *
Verify password *
Email *
Verify email *
Captcha *

EU States club together on buying military equipment - value for money and less bribery

submarineWith the UK due to leave the European Union, the remaining member states have advanced with a unified plan to integrate military funding, weapons development, and the deployment of European defence forces.

The UK always has opposed this sort of cooperation but with Brexit looking and pressure from the US, whose president has accused EU countries of not paying their fair share to support NATO, the unified plan is going ahead and may well hurt American defence suppliers.

The pact was signed on November 13th agreeing to integrate defence procurement and to cooperate. The pact was referred to by EU foreign policy boss, Federica Mogherini, as “historic,” adding that “the real problem is not how much we spend, it is the fact we spend in a fragmented manner.”

Mogherini said the pact would strengthen the work of the US-led NATO but the UK has always been wary of creating a ‘European Army’ but, while remaining a member of NATO post-Brexit, it will have no say in how the Union runs its affairs.

The group will have a €5 billion European Defence Fund with which to buy weapons, a separate fund for operations and funds from the EU budget for weapons research.

German Foreign Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, called the pact a “milestone in European development,” with the EU ending up with stronger and better coordinated national military forces able jointly to respond to crises.

The co-development of weapons could help European defence companies and disadvantage US manufacturers and suppliers.

The next step is that the EU member states’ leaders will sign the legally binding agreement in December 2017.

Much of Portugal’s defence procurement process has been marred with corruption with the now infamous 'German submarines contract' highlighting a widespread collusion between suppliers and buyers to defraud the State and taxpayers. Bungs totalling €6.4 million to 'unnamed senior Portuguese figures' were paid out by the German submarine consortium, yet no one in Portugal was ever charged with receiving a bribe. (here)

Centralised buying of military equipment may well reduce corruption at the national level and enable member states to obtain better value for money.

 

Comments  

-1 #4 Chip 2017-11-16 12:02
Quoting Neil M:
This new EU agreement will bring a new era to the union of European countries. For the first time Europe will have it's own army instead of the fragmented structure that existed before. It makes sense that the European arm of NATO will now work as a collective group and not in isolation as before.
It also means that if there is a crisis anywhere in Europe, weather it is fires or any disaster that requires air power it is readily available through this new cooperation. Again, well done EU.


The words "cloud" and "cuckoo" come to mind.
Quote
-1 #3 Neil M 2017-11-15 11:43
This new EU agreement will bring a new era to the union of European countries. For the first time Europe will have it's own army instead of the fragmented structure that existed before. It makes sense that the European arm of NATO will now work as a collective group and not in isolation as before.
It also means that if there is a crisis anywhere in Europe, weather it is fires or any disaster that requires air power it is readily available through this new cooperation. Again, well done EU.
Quote
-1 #2 Chip 2017-11-15 11:18
Thank the Lord that UK taxpayers won't have to fund the EU army. Or will we have to fund it as part of our "leaving deal"?
Quote
+1 #1 Peter Booker 2017-11-14 19:15
……or alternatively, the bungs will have to be that much bigger. If national officials can be corrupted, when they are kicked upstairs to Brussels, their scope for aggrandisement will be that much greater.
Quote