EU Commission Publishes Defence Action Plan
On 30 November 2016, the European Commission published its Defence Action Plan, which includes a European Defence Fund and other actions, to support the Member States in more efficient spending in joint defence capabilities, strengthen European citizens’ security and foster a competitive and innovative industrial base. More concretely, the Commission proposes: (i) to support investment in joint research and in the joint development of defence equipment and technologies; (ii) to foster investments in SMEs and other suppliers to the defence industry through financial support, such as co-financing of productive investment projects and modernization of defence supply chains; and (iii) to strengthen the Single Market for defence by pushing ahead with the effective application of the Directives on defence and security procurement and on EU transfers. The action plan also refers to the importance of strengthening the security of supply of those raw materials which are essential for the development of key defence capabilities; these include many critical raw materials, as identified in the recently published JRC study on raw materials and the defence sector.
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