Press conference

by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg following the meeting of NATO Heads of State and Government

  • 14 Jun. 2021 -
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  • Mis à jour le: 14 Jun. 2021 20:17

(As delivered)

Good evening, it’s great to see you all. 

We have just finished a very good meeting, NATO Summit. 
And it was really great to be together and to meet together again in person, as a truly transatlantic family, or as Prime Minister Johnson said, it was like the first day back at school, seeing all your old friends again. And that was really the atmosphere in the room. 

Today, we open a new chapter for our Alliance. 

We addressed key issues for our security and took far-reaching decisions.

We heard a strong message from President Biden on America’s commitment to NATO, and an equally strong commitment to other Allies in return.
All leaders agreed that, in an age of global competition, Europe and North America must stand strong together in NATO.
To defend our values and our interests.

Especially at a time when authoritarian regimes like Russia and China challenge the rules-based order. 

Allies welcomed today’s consultations with President Biden, ahead of his meeting with President Putin in Geneva.  

Our relationship with Russia is at its lowest point since the Cold War. 
And Moscow’s aggressive actions are a threat to our security.

NATO remains committed to our dual track approach of defence and dialogue. 
We will keep our defences strong, while remaining ready to talk.
To make our positions clear.
Avoid misunderstanding.
And prevent escalation. 

We fully support the decision to extend the New START Treaty. 
And we would welcome new strategic talks on future arms control. 
With continued coordination here at NATO. 

We stand in solidarity with our valued partners Ukraine and Georgia. 
And we will continue to support their reforms, bringing them closer to NATO. 

At the Summit today, we also addressed China.

There is a strong convergence of views among Allies.

Based on our interests, we see opportunities to engage on issues such as arms control and climate change. 
But China’s growing influence and international policies present challenges to Alliance security.

Leaders agreed that we need to address such challenges together as an Alliance. 
And that we need to engage with China to defend our security interests. 

We are concerned by China’s coercive policies which stand in contrast to the fundamental values enshrined in the Washington Treaty. 
China is rapidly expanding its nuclear arsenal with more warheads and a larger number of sophisticated delivery systems. 

It is opaque in implementing its military modernisation. 

It is cooperating militarily with Russia, including through exercises in the Euro-Atlantic area. 

We also remain concerned about China’s use of disinformation.

NATO leaders called on China to uphold its international commitments and to act responsibly in the international system.
Including in space, cyber and maritime domains, in keeping with its role as a major power.      

Today, leaders agreed our ambitious NATO 2030 agenda. 
To ensure the Alliance can face the challenges and threats of today and tomorrow.

We took concrete decisions in eight key areas.

First, we agreed to enhance NATO as the transatlantic forum for consultations and joint action on all matters related to our security.
And we agreed to strengthen and broaden our political consultation and coordination. 

Second, we agreed to reinforce our deterrence and defence. 
By strengthening NATO as the framework for the defence of the Euro-Atlantic area.
And recommitting to the Defence Investment Pledge we made in 2014. 
Third, we agreed to strengthen the resilience of our societies. 
With a new resilience commitment by NATO leaders.
We will develop NATO-wide resilience objectives, and concrete national goals. 
To safeguard our critical infrastructure.

Fourth, we will sharpen our technological edge.

Allies have agreed to launch a Defence Innovation Accelerator for the North Atlantic – or DIANA. 
Working with start-ups, industry, and universities, this centre will promote transatlantic cooperation, and help avoid gaps among Allies.  

Allies also agreed to establish a NATO Innovation Fund, to invest in start-ups working on emerging and disruptive technologies. 

Fifth, we will step up our work to uphold the rules-based international order.

To this end, we will strengthen our partnerships in the Asia-Pacific, with Australia, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea.
And seek new relationships with countries across Latin America, Africa and Asia.

We are also committed to the further deepening of our cooperation with the European Union. 

Sixth, we will substantially step up training and capacity-building for partners. 
From Ukraine and Georgia to Iraq and Jordan.
Seventh, leaders agreed that for the first time, addressing the security impact of climate change will be an important task for NATO. 

This will include regular assessments of the impact of climate change on our installations, missions, and other activities.
Integrating climate change into our exercises, defence planning and procurement. 
And developing a methodology for assessing greenhouse gas emissions from military activities. 

I am pleased to announce that all Allies made a clear commitment to significantly reduce military emissions.
We also agreed to set concrete targets for NATO to contribute to the goal of Net Zero emissions by 2050. 

I also want to thank Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Canada for offering to host a new NATO Centre of Excellence on Climate and Security.

Finally, we agreed to develop NATO’s next Strategic Concept in time for our summit in 2022.   
Reaffirming our values, and reflecting the significant changes in our security environment over the past decade. 

The NATO 2030 agenda sets a higher level of ambition.
And it provides a clear direction for the future adaptation of our Alliance.

Allies agreed that these decisions must be underpinned by the right resources – through national defence expenditure, and NATO common funding.

This will be the seventh consecutive year of growing defence spending across European Allies and Canada. 
With over 260 billion US dollars extra on defence since 2014. 

Allies are also investing in new capabilities.
And contributing to NATO missions and operations.

All of this means fairer burden-sharing across the Alliance. 
And we must maintain this momentum.  

To do more together, Allies agreed that we also need to invest more together in NATO.
To resource our requirements in a
more challenging security environment.

This will require increased resources across all three NATO budgets: military, civil, and infrastructure. 

For instance to support more joint training and exercises, 
command and control,
stronger cyber defences, 
pre-positioned equipment, 
better infrastructure, 
and more capacity-building for our partners.

So by agreeing the NATO 2030 agenda, leaders have taken decisions to make our Alliance stronger and better fit for the future.

We also took decisions on our newest operational domains: cyber and space.

Allies agreed a new cyber defence policy for NATO. 
It recognises that cyberspace is contested at all times.
And ensures that we have strong
technical capabilities, 
political consultations, and 
military planning in place to keep our systems secure. 

We also made clear that NATO is determined to defend itself in space as effectively as we do in all other domains: 
land, sea, air, and cyber. 

And I thank Luxembourg for funding a Strategic Space Situational Awareness System here at NATO Headquarters.

We also addressed Afghanistan. 

After almost 20 years, NATO military operations are coming to an end. 
We pay tribute to all those who have lost their lives or been wounded. 
And express our appreciation to all those who have served under the NATO flag.

NATO leaders reaffirmed their commitment to continue to stand with Afghanistan.
With training and financial support for Afghan forces and institutions.
And funding to ensure the continued functioning of the international airport. 

So we have made important decisions today.
To make NATO stronger in a more competitive world. 
And chart the course for our Alliance over the next decade and beyond. 
With that, I am ready to take your questions.