The EU Allocates More than Half a Billion Euros for Defense Projects
The European Commission has announced that it has approved programs for the co-financing of joint industrial defense projects until 2020 worth up to € 500 million. An additional € 25 million is earmarked to support joint research defense projects this year.
From 2021, the European Defense Fund will promote the defense industry and contribute to the EU's strategic autonomy. Initially, the funding will be targeted at the development of unmanned aerial vehicles, satellite communications, early warning systems, artificial intelligence, electronic defense and maritime surveillance.
Of these amounts, € 80 million will be earmarked for capabilities to detect chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats, as well as systems for counteracting drones. A total of € 182 million will focus on cyberspace awareness and protection, early warning capabilities and maritime surveillance, the report said.
For high-tech activities, EUR 71 million will be earmarked to develop or renew terrestrial equipment for next-generation precision, capabilities for land, air and naval combat. For new defense technologies, 27m euros are foreseen. More than EUR 100 million is earmarked for the development of new drones, while another EUR 37 million will be aimed at supporting interoperable and secure military means of communication.
This year, EUR 25 million will be provided for research in the field of electromagnetic superiority and future defense technologies. It is envisaged that the European Defense Fund will be able to allocate up to eight percent of its budget for revolutionary technology.
The first projects will be selected by the end of the year and will be funded free of charge by the EU. Last year, the European Commission proposed that the European Defense Fund should have a budget of € 13 billion.
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