by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg ahead of the meetings of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs and NATO Ministers of Defence
Two weeks from today, the leaders of NATO’s 30 nations will meet here in Brussels.
And tomorrow, I will chair virtual meetings of NATO Foreign and Defence Ministers.
We will discuss a range of issues, including the way forward for our engagement in Afghanistan.
And developments in Ukraine and Belarus.
But ministers will focus on preparations for the Summit.
This is a pivotal moment for our Alliance, and our collective security.
In a more competitive and unpredictable world, we need transatlantic unity.
Europe and North America standing strong together in NATO.
So the goal of our NATO 2030 initiative is to prepare our Alliance for the future.
Over the past months, Allies have been consulting closely and constructively.
We still have some work to do.
But we all agree that we must take ambitious and forward-looking decisions.
First, we will reinforce our unity.
Consulting more on all issues that affect our security in NATO.
Strengthening our commitment to collective defence.
And agreeing to develop NATO’s next Strategic Concept to chart a common course for the future.
Second, we will broaden NATO’s approach to security.
With a strengthened focus on resilience, including infrastructure, supply chains, and communications.
We will also take decisions to sharpen our technological edge.
And to set the gold standard when it comes to understanding and mitigating the security implications of climate change.
Third, we will play a greater role in safeguarding the international rules-based order.
To defend our values and interests.
Deepening our partnerships with like-minded countries and forging new ones.
And stepping up training and capacity-building for partners.
All of this work will require continued investment in our defence.
We are on the right track, with seven consecutive years of increases by European Allies and Canada.
And we need to keep up the momentum.
We need to spend more.
But we also need to spend more together.
Therefore, Allies should invest more together.
Because pooling our resources is a force multiplier.
A more effective way to boost our common security.
And it sends a powerful message of unity and resolve – both to our own people, and to any potential adversary.
NATO brings together Europe and North America.
We must continue to adapt to an age of global competition.
And we must continue to stand together to defend our one billion people.
With that, I am ready to take your questions.