NATO-Industry Forum opens in Split
NATO Deputy Secretary General, Amb. Alexander Vershbow, Croatian Defence Minister Ante Kotromanović and Deputy Foreign and European Affairs Minister, Joško Klisović delivered their addresses opening the NATO Industry Forum in the "Le Meridien Lav" Hotel in Split on 14 November 2014.
The Forum, organised by the Allied Command of Transformation (ACT) under the auspices of NATO Secretary General, serves as a framework for a closer co-operation between the Alliance and the defence industry. In his video-streamed welcome address, the President of the Republic, Ivo Josipović praised the event as an important forum featuring discussions and proposals contributing to further development and enhancement of the security systems of the member nations and the Alliance in its entirety.
Deputy Secretary General Vershbow welcomed the forum as a unique opportunity to discuss the security challenges NATO nations face, and how they can meet those challenges jointly, co-operating with the industry as a key partner. He warned of the volatile security environment, requiring a strong, ready and capable NATO, a strong transatlantic bond and a closer partnership with industry.
Croatian Defence Minister, Ante Kotromanović commended the NATO-Industry forum as a valuable framework for exchange of experience with the leading defence industry companies and addressed the latest developments in the European environment. “It is our duty to assess the existing capabilities and consider the extent of investment into the security of countries and their citizens. A synergy of the Alliance and the defence industry towards strategic autonomy and wider co-operation is a necessity“, said Minister Kotromanović.
Croatian Deputy Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Joško Klisović stressed the strategic importance of the defence industry for NATO. “It is a great pleasure to host top innovators and representatives of Croatian companies here today“ said Deputy Minister Klisović.
"Co-operation with NATO as a unique multinational client is at once a great honour and a big challenge“, said the Chief Executive Officer of ThalesRaytheon Systems, Philippe Duhamel.
At the media conference following the opening, the Supreme Allied Commander for Transformation, General Jean-Paul Palomeros stated: “The new challenges before the Alliance seek new solutions and innovative thinking. Our job is to get to the solutions“, stressed General Palomeros.
The senior attendees of the Forum included Assistant NATO Secretary General for Defence Investment, Patrick Auroy, Deputy Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Dragutin Repinc, Assistant Defence Minister for Material Resources, Viktor Koprivnjak, and other MoD and Armed Forces officials.
The NATO – Industry Forum is the first post-Wales opportunity for the NATO and defence industry representatives to discuss the security exigencies and priorities. The summit highlighted the importance of the strong defence industry and related co-operation, and in return the Forum gave the defence industry representatives the insight into NATO's priorities and enabled them to plan the strategic investments accordingly.
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