EU Defence Policy

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Steven Baker Steven Baker Conservative, Wycombe

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will make it his policy to ensure the UK does not enter into permanent binding commitments within the EU's Permanent Structured Cooperation after the UK has left the EU.

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

The Government has made clear that EU defence initiatives should be: coherent with NATO requirements; available to NATO; and have the fullest participation of non-EU NATO Allies. Where these conditions are met, the UK can support the development of EU tools such as Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO).

The UK has not joined PESCO as an EU Member State, but has expressed an interest in participating in capability development projects as part of the future partnership, on a voluntary and case-by-case basis, where this is of clear benefit to the UK. PESCO-participating Member States continue to negotiate the terms on which third countries might take part in PESCO projects.

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