Past Monday, eighteen countries inked the European Defence Agency (EDA) collaboration agreement for the procurement of ammunition. The accord permits EU Member States and Norway to pursue two avenues: a two-year, expedited course of action for 155mm artillery shells and a seven-year venture to obtain a variety of ammunition types. Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, and Norway have all signed. More Member States have signified their willingness to join the effort soon, after completing their national procedures. All this is done in full compliance with sovereign national decisions and without compromising the special character of the security and defence policy of any EU Member States. This project may be employed to replenish Member States’ national stockpiles and/or support Ukraine.
In response to the call to acquire ammunition faster and more efficiently by assembling, regulating and consenting to contracts with the European defence industry, EDA created the ‘Collaborative Procurement of Ammunition’ project in record time. This project gives a concrete foundation for the Member States’ aim to buy ammunition urgently required for Ukraine jointly. This initiative transmits a plain signal to the industry and reinforces the EU’s backing for Ukraine in the wake of Russia’s offensive war.
Cost reduction can be achieved by means of common procurement, which enables Member States to obtain ammunition in line with their requirements and to support Ukraine. This arrangement is highly adaptable and open to all EDA Member States, allowing them to join in at a later time.
The Head of the Agency and HRVP, Josep Borrell, declared: “This is an important move forward. Our intention to provide Ukraine with artillery ammunition is being fulfilled. 18 countries have joined together to collaborate with the European Defence Agency and order the necessary items. The Ukrainian authorities have made their requirements known, and this project from the EDA is the European Union’s answer. By procuring jointly through the EDA and leveraging the European Peace Facility’s monetary aid, Ukraine will receive their supplies more quickly. We are overcoming a barrier and unlocking the potential of EU cooperation in collective procuring.”
A QUICK METHOD FOR 155mm ARTILLERY SHELLS
Before the Ministers of Defence Council’s informal gathering in Stockholm on 7 and 8 March, Agency Head Borrell proposed three distinct tactics which would enhance the supply of artillery ammunition and speed up the process: first, to support Member States in distributing such ammunition from their national supplies or from pending orders; second, to combine demand and promptly begin collaborative procurement of 155mm; and third, to increase the production capabilities of the European defence sector.
The EDA has established a way of achieving the second track, which involves a rapid procedure to make the tendering process more efficient and contract arrangements in a timely manner. Member States can be reimbursed through the European Peace Facility, a separate resource from the EU budget that facilitates its Common Foreign and Security Policy.
ARRANGING A SEVEN YEAR PROJECT FOR SEVERAL TYPES AND SIZES OF AMMUNITION
Since November 2022, the EDA has been engaged in three distinct procurement fields: munitions, soldier systems, and CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear) equipment. This is part of the ongoing work of the Joint Defence Task Force with Member States to identify the most critical deficiencies.
For a period of seven years, the ‘Collaborative Procurement of Ammunition’ initiative offers Member States a joint approach to obtaining various calibres of ammunition (ranging from 5.56 mm to 155 mm) to replenish their supply.
Jiři Šedivý, the CEO of EDA, commented that this is an important event for the EU, European defence, and the EDA. He went on to explain that the lack of ammunition and stockpiles adversely affects the readiness of Member States’ military forces, as well as their capability to carry out their duties while giving assistance to Ukraine. The EDA has set up a flexible and open project that all Member States can join if they decide to, and he anticipates more countries joining in the next few days. As he concluded, the framework is there and now it’s up to the Member States to use it and for industry to respond.
EXTENDING THE SCOPE OF EXPLORATORY DATA ANALYSIS
Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA) has a role far beyond the traditional data visualization that is most often associated with it. It can also be used to uncover relationships among variables, detect outliers and anomalies, test assumptions, and develop predictive models. Additionally, it can be used to suggest hypotheses which can then be tested with more rigorous methods. Thus, EDA is an essential tool in helping to understand data and form meaningful conclusions.
The European Defence Agency enables and encourages its 26 Member States to enhance their defence capabilities through European collaboration. Acting as a facilitator for Ministries of Defence that wish to partake in cooperative capability projects, the Agency has become a core for European defence cooperation, possessing expertise and connections that cover all aspects of defence capacity.
European Defence Agency is a forum for Member States to work together on projects, which are facilitated and implemented. To get more information, please visit the following link: here.