171101eu400On Wednesday, November 1st, NATO’s Allied Command Transformation hosted members of the European Parliament sub-committee on Security and Defence.

Allied Command Transformation hosts a delegation from the European Union parliament annually in order to continuously strengthen NATO-European Union links. This year’s delegation consisted of the European Parliament committee on Foreign Affairs, from which 22 Members of Parliament and Members of the Committee Secretariat made the journey to North America.

Closer cooperation between NATO and the European Union is a strategic priority and both organizations are currently working to implement 42 measures that will deepen the relationship. On hybrid, we are putting in place concrete measures to increase situational awareness and to bolster our nations’ resilience to attacks. On cyber, we will strengthen our mutual participation in exercises, and foster new research. In October, NATO and the European Union conducted two parallel and coordinated exercises.

While in North America, Members of the European Parliament and NATO officials discussed the Strategic Foresight Analysis, projecting stability and partnerships, resilience and cyber capability development.

General Mercier noted that during last year, he had witnessed a change in the culture, quality and dynamics of the NATO-EU engagements. Cooperation between the two organisations is now becoming the established norm, a daily practice, fully corresponding to the new level of ambition referred to the joint declaration of the Warsaw Summit. The question of 2 percent of GDP in the Nations’ defence budget, as requested by NATO, was also at the heart of these discussions. European Union Members of Parliament discussed the importance of translating this budget target into tangible actions in capability development, innovation and operations. Members of the European Union also stressed the importance for all the European countries to better harmonize their defence efforts in order to contribute to the Euro-Atlantic security.