NIF 2016 – the importance of a “strong defence industry, a strong European defence industry and a strong North-American defence industry
NATO officials and representatives of the defence and security industry gathered on 9 November 2016 for the annual NATO-Industry Forum, held this year at the Palais d’Egmont in Brussels.
NATO’s Secretary General, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, General Denis Mercier, and four hundred people joined together to better understand the needs of both NATO and industry. Participants came from 35 countries and represented more than 80 industries, including several of the top global defence industries.
The NATO-Industry Forum is now the premier venue for strategic dialogue with the defence industry on NATO capability planning and development. Discussions help NATO and industry develop the tools and capabilities the Alliance requires.
Addressing the Forum’s plenary session General Mercier shared his vision with senior leaders of industry. This very fruitful discussion was an occasion to tie the needs of the military with the commercial world and develop solutions that improve military procurement.
In the plenary session, State of the NATO-Industry Forum, Gen Mercier stressed, “As we progress with NATO’s adaptation, we scrutinize the future and make sure that today’s political and military decisions, take into account the requirements of tomorrow. The capabilities we discuss today, have to meet the challenges posed by the future security environment.”
In a joint press conference to conclude the Forum, the Secretary General, the Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Didier Reynders, and General Mercier stressed the importance of a close working relationship with the private sector with NATO and underlined the importance of a “strong defence industry, a strong European defence industry and a strong North-American defence industry.”
These themes will continue to be explored by Allied Command Transformation at the Chiefs of Transformation Conference, taking place December 13th – 15th. The Chiefs of Transformation Conference gathers leading military and civilian thinkers and, together with the NATO-Industry Forum, set the agenda for 2017.