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European Defence Agency

Volume 501: debated on Wednesday 25 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the role is of the European Defence Agency; and if he will make a statement. (300503)

The European Defence Agency (EDA) was established in July 2004. The mission of the EDA is to support the European Council and the member states in their effort to improve the EU's defence capabilities in the field of crisis management and to sustain the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) as it stands now and develops in the future. The agency was tasked by the council to:

Develop European defence capabilities;

Promote armaments co-operation in the EU;

Improve the European defence industrial and technological base; and

Promote collaborative defence research across the Union.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he has responded to the European Defence Agency’s Capability Development Plan. (300506)

The Ministry of Defence supports the European Defence Agency’s Capability Development Plan (CDP), which focuses the Agency’s and participating member states’ efforts on developing European military capabilities in 12 selected priority areas. We participated fully in the development of the CDP and we are currently engaged in a number of the CDP programmes. We will continue to support the CDP as a mechanism for addressing military capability shortfalls across Europe and participate in projects where we see military benefit to the UK.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what funding from the public purse has been provided to the European Defence Agency in each year since 2005; what assessment he has made of its performance; and if he will make a statement. (300507)

The European Defence Agency (EDA) does valuable work developing European military capabilities and works successfully with participating member states on collaborative programmes and projects. The amount paid by the Ministry of Defence to the EDA in each year since 2005 is provided in the following table:

Calendar year

£ million

2005

2.36

2006

2.09

2007

1.95

2008

3.11

2009

3.03

The figures in the table relate to the amounts paid for each calendar year. It should be noted that the answers provided previously to this question on 6 March 2009, Official Report, column 1857W and 20 April 2009, Official Report, column 65W referred to financial years (April to March) but the amounts detailed actually related to calendar years.