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3. SCOPE: General

When a nation is faced with the decision on the development and implementation of a Codification System complying with the NATO Codification system, there are a number of options available. A nation could very well choose not to implement such a system and continue working with its existing system. Of course, this option would not provide any improvement to the level of interoperability with NATO nations nor would it enhance its materiel management capabilities. Two other options available to a nation are that they develop and implement their own Codification System or acquire an existing system from a NATO nation or from another PfP nation.

Up to now, the three options mentioned in the previous paragraph were the only ones available. However, the first option is not acceptable in terms of interoperability while the other two are rather expensive and involve a great deal of risk. The collective experience in NATO is that it takes at least 3 to 5 years to develop a system and 1 – 2 years to implement an acquired system. Both of these options require a rather high level of investment in terms of money and highly qualified personnel. Furthermore, the costs of operation of the NCS are significantly high even if they are compensated by substantial savings in the area of materiel management.

The BASELOG program supports 3 different approaches to introducing a Codification System

bulletApproach 1: National development and implementation of the NATO Codification System.
bulletApproach 2: Acquisition of the NATO Codification System from another nation.
bulletApproach 3: Shared codification system with another nation.

The third approach provides nations with another option that may be advantageous to all. This option is to let one of the NATO NCBs perform Codification on behalf of one or more Partner nation(s). A nation selecting this option would still be required to set up a codification bureau but on a much smaller scale than if it were to codify its own items. Under this option, the client nation’s NCB would be responsible to submit its data to the NATO codification bureau of its choice. The NCB, providing the service, would, for example, provide the service of actually codifying the items or provide codification system support and publications. Finally the client NCB would make the codified data available to its Armed Forces or Services.

This option should be of interest to those nations that want to reduce the initial investment, the personnel, the time, the operational costs as well as the risks involved in putting in place the NCS. It could also be of interest to those nations that decide to develop full codification capabilities but want to start codifying their materiel while the system is being developed and implemented.

NCS Users