Plans to create a new €13 billion European Defence Fund were today approved in the European Parliament’s Industry Committee.

The proposals, which are being steered through the parliament by ECR Polish MEP Zdzisław Krasnodębski, will provide financing to help Member States pool military procurement resources more effectively and finance cross-border investment in interoperable defence products and technologies. Under the currently foreseen budget, €4.1 billion will be provided to cover up to the totality of collaborative defence research projects, while €8.9 billion will be available to complement Member States’ investment through the co-financing of technologies and products jointly developed by the European defence industry.

“Joint investment will help Member States to reduce duplication and improve the interoperability of defence equipment. It should also drive advances in technology through better coordinated tender calls. We need to allocate further resources to closing the gap between breakthroughs in research and the time it takes for that research to reach the market in the form of innovative technologies. This should also see us provide more support for SMEs and mid-caps who are important defence industry players in a number of Member States. I hope the European Defence Fund will help them to build stronger cross border partnerships,” said after the vote MEP Krasnodębski.

“Internationally, we need to ensure the fund is more open to the EU’s third country security partners,  particularly those that guarantee our security through the NATO alliance, while making sure entities controlled by countries under EU sanctions are excluded from the fund,” he added.