January 24, 2018 – The AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD) welcomes the high-level strategic dialogue hosted today by Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska and MEP Françoise Grossetête to which Eric Trappier, ASD President and Chairman & CEO of Dassault Aviation has been invited to exchange views on the future European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP).
This important meeting took place on the occasion of the 10th Conference on European Space Policy. Space is a strategic sector equally important for defence, security and civil applications. This duality also characterizes ASD’s membership which includes companies from aeronautics, space, security and defence. This requires to remain competitive towards European defence as well as on the global scene.
In his statement, the ASD President stressed Industry’s full support for the EDIDP as a key element of the European Defence Fund.
“Every day, our armed forces protect the security of our citizens and our common interests. To fulfil their missions, they need state-of-the art capabilities enabling them to cope with all current and future security threats”, he said.
According to Mr. Trappier, EU funding for defence Research & Development (R&D) has the potential to make a difference for Europe. It has to complement – not replace - national investments and foster cooperation between Member States. Without new cooperative programmes, it will be impossible to sustain a competitive European defence technological and industrial base (EDTIB), which is an indispensable prerequisite for the effectiveness of our armed forces and Europe’s strategic autonomy.
Mr Trappier thanked Commissioner Bieńkowska for the European Commission’s proposal, and welcomed the European Council’s General Approach of last December. “We now fully trust on the European Parliament and the Rapporteur, MEP Grossetête, the Bulgarian Presidency and the Commission to bring this important endeavor on time to a successful completion.”