NATO’s Deputy Secretary General stresses the importance of NATO-EU cooperation and complementarity
In a panel discussion at the Bled Strategic Forum on Thursday (2 September 2021), NATO’s Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană said that a stronger European Union in defence can make the Alliance stronger, but will not replace it. He stressed the importance of the transatlantic bond in today’s unpredictable world and the value of NATO-EU partnership to address current security challenges.
Mr. Geoaña also welcomed and encouraged continued efforts by NATO EU member states to spend more on defence.
At NATO’s Brussels Summit on 14 June 2021, as part of NATO’s 2030 agenda, Allied Leaders agreed to explore ways to further deepen NATO-EU cooperation. In doing so, NATO and the EU need to respond to the needs of our societies and public opinions, NATO’s Deputy Secretary General said. He named cyber, space, resilience, the pandemic and our values/rules-based order as areas of shared interest for NATO and EU.
Ongoing work on the development of the new NATO Strategic Concept and the EU Strategic Compass could contribute to enhancing NATO-EU cooperation, NATO’s Deputy Secretary General noted. These will need to be complementary and mutually reinforcing, he added.
The future of Europe was the leading theme of the 2021 Bled Strategic Forum. Mr João Gomes Cravinho, Minister of National Defense of Portugal, Ms Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces of France, and Mr Matej Tonin, Minister of Defence of Slovenia also took part in the panel discussion entitled ‘Lining up Europe’s Defence’.