European Defence Fund: €205 million to boost the EU’s strategic autonomy and industrial competitiveness

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The European Commission has announced 16 pan-European defence industrial projects and three disruptive technology projects that will benefit from €205 million financing aimed at enhancing the EU’s strategic autonomy.

In a statement, the Commission said that the projects will support the development of European defence capabilities such as drones and related technologies (low-observable and tactical drones, detect and avoid system for military drones, edge computing platforms for drones), space technologies (Galileo military-grade encrypted receivers, military grade optical payload for small satellites, big data system for satellite surveillance), unmanned ground vehicles, high precision missile systems (BLOS – anti-tank missiles), future naval platforms, airborne electronic attack capability, tactical and highly secured networks, cyber situational awareness platforms, or next generation of active stealth technologies.

In total, 441 entities applied to EDIDP calls, contributing to 40 proposals. 223 entities from 16 proposals will be supported by EDIDP. These entities are based in 24 different EU Member States

For the first time such funding is supporting three projects dedicated to disruptive technologies through dedicated calls, designed to prepare the future EDF, which allocates up to 8% of its budget to disruptive actions. These are important to make sure Europe remains at the forefront of technological development.

Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President for a Europe Fit for the Digital Age, said: “The European Defence Fund will enable spending better by spending together, thereby reducing fragmentation and inefficiencies. The successful results of its precursor programmes, announced today, show the great potential that exists in cooperation between defence industries large and small, and from across the EU.”

Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market, said: “These promising projects demonstrate the EU’s ability to promote and support cooperation between European defence industries and Member States. By developing high-end technologies and defence capabilities, we are strengthening the EU’s resilience and strategic autonomy. All participants in the defence value chain, regardless of their size and their origin within the EU, can benefit. The European Defence Fund, with the right level of financing, will enable to significantly scale up these first successes.”

These projects come on top of the 15 others research projects already financed since 2017 through the PADR and the upcoming direct support to two large-scale projects (MALE drone and ESSOR).

 

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