Sat. Nov 26th, 2022

Brussels, 15 November 2022

Following the United Kingdom’s request to participate in the PESCO project Military Mobility, the Council adopted today a decision confirming that the participation of the UK in the Military Mobility project meets the general conditions set out in Decision (CFSP) 2020/1639 of November 2020.

Today’s decision authorises the Netherlands as project coordinator to formally invite the UK to join this PESCO project, and also recognises the substantial added value that the UK could bring to it.

Russia’s war against Ukraine has further demonstrated that being able to move troops and military equipment swiftly across Europe and beyond is essential for our security. Sharing information and experiences with key partners is crucial. The PESCO project “Military Mobility” led by the Netherlands provides the right platform in this regard. After the US, Canada and Norway joined last year, the UK’s participation is yet another proof of the importance of this project. Ensuring fast movement and secure transport of armed forces is crucial to improve the EU and NATO’s ability to respond to crises, in particular now as we provide urgent military support to Ukraine.

Josep Borrell, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

The PESCO project Military Mobility is a political-strategic platform aiming to simplify and standardise national cross-border military transport procedures. It enables the swift movement of military personnel and assets throughout the EU, be it via road, rail, sea, or air. Canada, Norway and the United States of America joined this project in 2021, following the same procedure.

Background

The Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) is one of the pillars of EU Defence Policy. It provides a framework for defence cooperation among the 25 participating EU member states who have entered into more binding commitments between one another. They jointly develop defence capabilities, coordinate investments, enhance the operational readiness, interoperability and resilience of their armed forces, and collaborate in projects.

On 5 November 2020, the Council adopted Decision (CFSP) 2020/1639 establishing the general conditions under which third States could exceptionally be invited to participate in individual PESCO projects. The countries applying must meet political, legal, and substantive conditions, including sharing the values on which the EU is founded and not contravene the security and defence interests of the EU and its member states.

The PESCO project Military Mobility seeks to improve national measures to accelerate military mobility across borders within the EU. Canada, Norway and the United States of America already participate in the project since the end of 2021, following the same process.

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