European Defence Fund on track with €525 million for Eurodrone and other joint research and industrial projects
On 19 March 2019 the European Commission adopted the first European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP) work programme, which provides €500 million in co-financing for the joint development of defence capabilities during 2019-2020. The Commission will shortly publish 9 calls for proposals for 2019 and 12 further calls will follow for 2020. These calls will cover priority areas in all domains - air, land, sea, cyber and space:
- enabling operations, protection and mobility of military forces
- intelligence, secured communication & cyber
- ability to conduct high-end operations
- innovative defence technologies & small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
In addition, 2 projects have been proposed for direct awards to support the development of the Eurodrone and to support European Secure Software Defined Radio (ESSOR)’s interoperable and secure military communications.
The Commission also published calls for proposals under the Preparatory Action on Defence Research (PADR). The 2019 Work Programme will dedicate €25 million for research in electromagnetic spectrum dominance and future disruptive defence technologies - 2 areas identified as essential to maintain Europe's technological lead and independence in the long-term.
With both programmes now operational and running, the Commission is paving the way for a fully-fledged European Defence Fund for the next financial period 2021-2027.
First ENDR event of 2019 on the European Cyber Defence Industry
On 26 February, Tallinn was the place-to-be to discuss Cyber Defence in the EU. The event was opened by the Estonian Minister of Defence Jüri Luik. A total of 130 participants from small to larger enterprises, academia and authorities from different countries gathered to discuss the situation of the European market for cyber defence, funding opportunities for cyber defence companies and the availability of skills.
Technical talks and matchmaking activities concluded the event.
Save the Date: ENDR Conference on Innovative Defence Technologies for the Virtual Battlefield, 18-19 September 2019, Finland
This ENDR event, organised by the European Commission, Kainuun Etu,, Association of Finnish Defence and Aerospace Industries and the European Association of Development Agencies, will take place in Kajaani (Finland). It will bring companies and regional organisations together to discuss opportunities offered by the European Defence Fund and other programmes that support the development of defence technologies in the areas of communications, simulation & modelling and virtual training.
During interactive sessions, SMEs active in these areas will be able to share their experiences in getting support from the European level, present their innovative technologies and/or express their intention to reach out to potential partners to work in European projects.
Interested SMEs can contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Matchmaking and b2b activities will be facilitated. Participants will be able to attend a field trip and virtual simulations.
More info coming soon.
High level conference on skills in defence - discussing the way forward
On 13 March, 120 participants gathered in Brussels to discuss the outcome of the work of the European Defence Skills Partnership (EDSP) on a common vision on defence-related skills to solve today and tomorrow’s skill gaps in Europe.
The main aim of the event - ‘Towards a European Defence Skills Strategy’ - organised by the European Commission, was to focus on the way forward in advance of the new Commission that will be setting priorities for 2019-2024, as well as on solutions to be implemented at European, national and regional levels.
These are the key takeaways from the panel discussions on the way forward:
- we need to develop strategic foresight in identifying and maintaining an awareness of the industry’s skill needs
- we need to collaborate at European level to attain sustainable solutions for our common needs and learn from each other
- we need to develop an ecosystem comprising industry, universities, training institutions and research centres to accelerate knowledge transfer, allow proactive communication of the sector’s needs and faster response by education and training
- we need to align with the European Defence Fund to ensure we have the skills for building capabilities for our security
- we need to use European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) to support clustering and develop training and up-skilling, especially in new technologies. Although projects are already happening, we need to raise the awareness of managing authorities about the potential of ESIF to fund projects for the defence sector through ESIF
- we need to raise awareness of the importance of the European defence industry through communication and outreach to make the defence industry more attractive to new talent, but companies must also adapt to the goals and profiles of the changing labour force
To watch the video on the EDSP click here