Unnecessary for EU countries to build overlapping defense capacity alongside NATO, says Finnish defense minister

09:43, September 21, 2010      

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Finnish defense minister Jyri Hakamies said in Helsinki on Monday it is unnecessary for EU countries to build overlapping defense capacities alongside with NATO.

Hakamies said at the opening ceremony of a defense course that overlapping defense-capacity building would cause a huge waste in resources, functions, structures and capacities.

The EU countries are cutting their defense budgets for the years to come due to the aftermath of economic crisis. Therefore, it is becoming increasingly unlikely that EU would be able to establish its own defense capacity.

Hakamies said the EU's defense capacities could be strengthen through cooperating with NATO in many respects, such as crisis management, as well as by consolidating the "EU-NATO Strategy Partnership."

Cooperation and common actions between the EU and NATO would increase the economic efficiency in military and defense operations, he said. Currently more synergies can be found also in the EU and NATO's Rapid Reaction Force.

Hakamies said that Finland will actively contribute to both the development of the EU and the "EU-NATO Strategic Partnership. He said it is his hope that Finland could try to benefit from the chances brought by the strategic partnership between the blocs.

Source: Xinhua


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