10 NATO Allies take further step to boost European air and missile defence capabilities

  • 11 Oct. 2023 -
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  • Last updated: 11 Oct. 2023 19:05

Defence Ministers from 10 NATO Allies came together on Wednesday (11 October 2023) to sign a memorandum of understanding to further develop the European Sky Shield Initiative. Under Germany’s leadership, the initiative aims to bolster European air and missile defence through the joint acquisition of air defence equipment and missiles by European nations. This will strengthen NATO’s integrated air and missile defence.

Left to right: Ludivine Dedonder (Minister of Defence, Belgium); unknown; Juri Luik (NATO Permanent Representative, Estonia); Boris Pistorius (Minister of Defence, Germany); NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană; unknown; Andris Sprūds (Minister of Defence, Latvia); Arvydas Anušauskas (Minister of Defence, Lithuania); Kajsa Ollongren (Minister of Defence, The Netherlands); Marjan Šarec (Minister of Defence, Slovenia)

“European Sky Shield Initiative, under Germany’s leadership, shows the value of Allies stepping up to meet NATO’s requirements, while ensuring interoperability and integration,” said NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană. He added: “This initiative therefore, helps translate Allied commitments on defence spending into tangible capabilities available for our collective defence. It demonstrates the clear commitment of European Allies to fair burden sharing as well.”

The European Sky Shield Initiative enables participating nations to jointly procure an air and missile defence system in an efficient and cost-effective way using interoperable, off-the-shelf solutions. This multinational approach offers a flexible and scalable way for nations to strengthen their deterrence and defence. 

The 10 NATO Allies participating in the initiative are: Belgium, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands and Slovenia.