EU Defence Policy

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 2nd May 2019.

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Photo of Pauline Latham Pauline Latham Conservative, Mid Derbyshire

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how the Government plans to ensure that the UK does not become part of the EU’s military unification project in the event that the UK remains in the European Defence Agency, the European Defence Fund, the European Defence Industrial Development Programme and the Permanent Structured Co-operation programme.

Photo of Mark Lancaster Mark Lancaster The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

NATO will remain the cornerstone of our defence and security, and the UK will retain full sovereign control over its defence policy and decision making. A deal with the EU will, however, enable us to cooperate on foreign and security policy issues of shared interest. Accordingly, the Political Declaration agreed in November 2018 states that the UK's future relationship with the EU should benefit from cooperation on capabilities that facilitate interoperability and to promote joint effectiveness of Armed Forces. It thereby provides the option for the UK to participate in mutually beneficial capability projects and initiatives on a case-by-case basis, through the European Defence Agency, the European Defence Fund and PESCO, subject to conditions in Union law.

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