by NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller at the ceremony welcoming Canada and Poland to the multinational effort on Multinational Maritime Multi Mission Aircraft Capabilities

  • 15 Feb. 2018 -
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  • Last updated: 15 Feb. 2018 10:37

(As delivered)

Good morning, everyone and good morning to the ministers. It’s wonderful to see you all here this morning.

We are here this morning to welcome Canada and Poland to the ongoing multinational effort to develop a new generation of maritime multi mission aircraft capabilities. These allow the alliance to deliver on a range of crucial tasks – including intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare.

This follows the launch of the initiative last June, at which France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain and Turkey all committed to work together.

This joint effort stems from the recognition that the majority of Allies’ maritime patrol aircraft fleets will reach the end of their operational lives between 2025 and 2035. If Allies are to maintain the ability to respond to related threats, those aircraft will need to be replaced.

Later this year, Allies will agree on common requirements for new aircraft. It’s essential to then push on to the implementation phase.

The goal here isn’t just a drawing board design – we need a new generation of aircraft, in the air, fulfilling what is an increasingly important mission.

The concrete result will be new fleets of Maritime Multi Mission Aircraft – equipped for the 21st century. And, ultimately, more secure Allied seas.

Efforts such as this demonstrate Allies’ willingness to come together to find common solutions. Working together in this way is both operationally and financially prudent, and we welcome it very very much. 

 believe there is also an opportunity here for a joint NATO-EU approach, one similar in spirit to that of the multinational air-to-air tanker fleet in which five Allies are now included.

So, let me congratulate Canada and Poland for joining this important agreement today.

By doing so, you are making NATO stronger – and our almost one billion citizens safer.