The EU Defence Policy directors held an informal meeting in Zagreb on 22 and 23 January 2020, within the Croatian presidency of the Council of the EU, in preparation for the informal defence ministers meeting to be held in Zagreb on 4 and 5 March 2020.
The EU defence policy directors discussed the development and implementation of the EU defence-related initiatives, with the emphasis on Permanent Structured and the forthcoming strategic review. They also discussed the impact on climate changes on defence, and the modalities of further strengthening of the EU – NATO co-operation.
The defence policy directors agreed on the need to maintain the momentum of enhancing European defence co-operation, to encourage complementary development of capabilities and to continue efforts related to coherence and implementation of the ongoing initiatives. They also addressed the climatic changes as a growing challenge to the defence capacities, resources and the execution of operational tasks and missions of the armed forces.
Addressing the subject of further defence co-operation between the EU and NATO, the participants concluded that the joint activities were important for the support to the partners, particularly regarding hybrid threats.
The participants were joined by NATO Assistant Secretary General for Defence Policy and Planning Patrick Turner.
The meeting, hosted by Dunja Bujan, the acting Director of the Defence Policy Directorate of the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Croatia, was chaired by Pawel Herczynski, acting Deputy Secretary-General of the European External Action Service (EEAS).