Challenges and opportunities

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Faced with the challenges and risks arising in the process of economic globalization and world order, Europe is trying to respond adequately to it, namely, creating a general political unity, and forming a European identity. Within the EU there is ramified mechanism of economic, political and legal organs and institutions, carried out the interaction of the member-states of integration associations virtually in all directions.

The political formation of the EU has gained a new powerful impetus after its inclusion of legal and institutional framework in the founding document of the EU – in the Maastricht Treaty, the so-called “second pillar” of the European Union, entitled “Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). At the present stage of EU development the issue about effectiveness of the CFSP and ESDP in particular is staying very acute, that is the question of the effectiveness of the overall approach and collective action in addressing foreign policy issues. This question is urgent in light of events relating to the settlement of a conflict in the Balkans after the collapse of the Yugoslav state in the beginning and end of the 90’s., with the campaign against terrorism after September 11, 2001 in New York and Washington, Madrid in 2004, and London in 2005 and the reconstruction of Afghanistan as well as the situation around Iraq. Recent Russia’s invasion of Georgia on Aug. 7 of 2008 showed that the threat of traditional military confrontation has not disappeared. Therefore, Europe must restructure their armed forces in such a way as to carry out military operations in both security contexts, determining what threats it will face and how best to counter them.

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It has been 10 years since the emergence of ESDP. During this time the EU has faced many challenges associated with the implementation of this policy, ranging from lack of resources, institutional weakness, ending with the influence of the world players. Although, it is still early to drew a definite conclusions regarding the effectiveness of ESDP. However, we can talk about some appropriateness of the process that has been established in this trend.

Therefore the aim of this individual research paper is an attempt to analyze the main problems faced by the EU towards the effective implementation of ESDP, and what the possibilities opened up for Europe within the framework of ESDP after the signing of the Treaty of Lisbon. This work is an analysis of the lessons learned in order to integrate them into future development of this institution or any other organizations.

In accordance with the purpose of this work, it is structured into 3 chapters. First chapter will provide an opportunity to explicate how internal and external factors have pushed the EU to establish ESDP, as well as the role played by EU – 3 (France, Germany and Great Britain) in the creation of this policy. Furthermore, it will explore concern about attitude of the US towards the creation and development of this policy.

Second chapter scrutinized an existence of ESDP and highlight the main challenges which has been identified by the analyst for the past 10 years as regards to civil, military and financial resources. I have chosen the entire period of ESDP existence, as this policy is still very young for the definitively assess its ultimate effectiveness and feasibility. In other words, this is analysis of lessons learned.

Third chapter will focus on the possibilities of ESDP. It will examine what changes can be expected in the near future in relation to this policy, in regards to the improvements towards increasing of military and civilian capacities. Furthermore it will underline the main changes and opportunities which brings newly approved Lisbon Treaty.

The work is carried out by argumentative essay method.

This study paper will not analyze all conducted and ongoing missions of ESDP, also it will not touch upon history of ESDP development, as this paper will focus only on problems that interfere with this policy to exist independently and efficacy, and the hidden possibilities of this policy that are not yet fully appreciated. Also, the question concerning relationship between the Greece, Turkey and Cyprus that brings some difficulties in cooperation between NATO and ESDP are not present in this essay.

Political context as an obstacle for the development of effective ESDP on the contemporary stage

Preconditions for the creation of ESDP

In order to understand the marrow of ESDP it makes sense to consider the internal and external preconditions that led to the creation of this policy.

Among the external preconditions are dominated by the end of the Cold War and the events of 9/11 in the U.S. At one time the confrontation with Warsaw Pact had impeding the creation of a truly European system of security, shifting the balance of influence in favor of NATO and the United States. However, in late 1980 the situation began to transform rapidly. The basis and purpose of the transatlantic relationship had changed. Change of the geostrategic situation in the continent, associated with the collapse of the Soviet Union, and, accordingly, the bipolar system of international relations has opened up to Western European countries, opportunities to become more attractive center of power in the sphere of security.

In turn, increasing economic role of the EU gave rise to the desire of European leaders to complement its overall diplomatic and military instruments, without which the influence of the EU in international affairs would remain marginal. Throughout the 1990’s the EU was looking for such tools. However, early results have been mediocre – a common foreign policy and security policy has not become a really common and was incapable to avoid a tragedy in the Balkans.[1] Therefore, the emerging sense of security vacuum in Europe made closer positions of the Member States (EU MS), which led to the materialization of ESDP.

Conventional military forces, which are used to build in Europe, did not meet the challenges and threats inherent in post-bipolar world, it was the necessity to build up forces with flexible structure capable of performing non-traditional military functions. To maintain the security framework at the present level were required expensive systems. And the resolution of crisis situations required the presence of highly mobile units, equipped with the latest weapons and communication systems. The military budgets of the most nation-states have been unable to meet the requirements of the military sector developments. As a result, Europe has left two options: to continue to rely on the United States or attempt to integrate into the military sphere and create own forces.

After a while a new stimulus for the development of an independent ESDP had appeared, such as disagreement with U.S. unilateralism and U.S. domination of NATO. The differences in the positions of the U.S. and Europe emerged during the conflicts in the Balkans and, most clearly during the Iraqi crisis. European alertness has been provoked by the actual transformation of NATO in the conductor of the American global strategy. Therefore, the European states felt that they can not rely entirely on the U.S. as a guarantor of security in the region, and doubted that Washington’s policy towards Europe would be consistent with their preferences and priorities. Consequently, it became clear that if the EU seeks to influence global policy agenda, rather than follow in the wake of the United States, it will ultimately require the readiness and ability to use harsh means to ensure security. Thus, the creation of ESDP was the most appropriate mechanism through which urgent problems would be solved.

The EU – 3 (Britain, France and Germany) and their role in development of ESDP

The real breakthrough in the European cooperation in security sphere were the agreements reached at the Franco-British summit in Saint-Malo (December 1998). In the summit declaration had been mentioned about the need to provide opportunities for EU autonomous military operations, so that the EU would be able to take decisions and conduct military action in cases where the [Atlantic] Alliance is not involved [in the resolution of the crisis].[2] The negotiations, initiated by the British side, were not limited by the declarations and the European Council in 1999 and 2000s had been taken a number of decisions in order to strengthen the CFSP and create ESDP. At the Cologne summit institutional framework of ESDP has been fixed, and afterwards at the Helsinki summit stated the main goal, later transformed into “catalog of forces�. This goal was about creation by the year of 2003 such capabilities that would allow operational deployment of forces with the strengths of 50-60 thousands of troops (quick reaction force) that could sustain themselves at least one year, the final regulations were finally found in the Treaty of Nice, signed in February 2001.

Up till now, there is a disagreement among the EU – 3, about how the EU can become a more effective and influential actor in the world and what relations it must build with the US. These differences are associated with different approaches to the European integration in general. It will be considered, the role have been playing by Britain, France and Germany in ESDP, and what the major differences of their visions towards the implementation and essence of this policy.

The first point which is noteworthy to point out is the question “What ESDP is for?â€? and we could find distinctively different approaches from the Three, where the British believe in a “transatlantic Europe”, the French espouse the concept of Europe as a power, whilst the Germans are deeply committed to the idea of Europe as “an agent for peace”.[3] Further it will expose these approaches more deeply.

For a long time, Britain remained a staunch ally of the US, and did not felt the necessity to create anything out of the NATO military structure. But, after the events in Bosnia and Kosovo, the situation has radically changed in the opposite direction. The interests of the US and Britain during these conflicts were differed because the methods of solving such problems did not coincide.[4] All this led to the fact that Britain began to support and develop the idea of the EU military independence from the NATO and the United States. This approach has been similar to France; however on the other hand in the matters concerning their long-term visions these ideas weren’t match. The reason for this was that both countries with one hand would like to make the Europe as a power, which would be able to influence and respond to the world events, but on the other, each of them had their own idea of what role the EU should play in security and defense in long term period. Britain is keen to develop strong Europe’s security actor, which would be able to significantly contribute to the NATO capabilities and will not duplicate it, from the France perspective which is partly similar to the British, but on the other hand would like to build up separate security institution “Europe as a power� ultimately capable for the common defence. However, France’s point of view is that the Europe and the US would not compete in any manner, only interact and complement each other as regional powers.

Then, Germany’s position has always remained under restraint, which was dictated by the lessons of the past. Compared with Britain and France, Germany’s spending on defense sector was very small. And the idea of establishing ESDP, which gave them an opportunity to increase its military power, has found support in political circles very fast. Although, its opinion concerning ESDP functions was different from the others. The EU has been represented by the Germany, as an “agent for peaceâ€?, and methods of peaceful resolution of the conflict were the key point in its policy.

The second difference of the Three is how they perceive ESDP: as military or civilian power, regional or global organization. For example, France feel despondent about the fact that most of the operations conducted under the framework of ESDP are civilian. The fact remains, the majority of military operations are carried out by the NATO, not by ESDP, and those that are conducted using NATO resources (Berlin Plus agreement). But despite that, France is trying to be involved in all the missions with the military character, because they believe the EU would be perceived as the security actor only under condition that they could project military power, not only civilian. Germany’s vision is characterized as a counterbalance to the French position and does not distinguish military power as main tool for the strengthening of the EU position as a security actor; its remain opinion that military force in dealing with non-military security issues will not be successful. Although, at the same time not very much opposing building of the EU as a military power. Finally, Britain is quite pleased with the current balance of military and civil elements of ESDP.[5] They see ESDP as a very unique tool which is able to integrate civil aspects in military operations; moreover it is not duplicating or hindering NATO operations, even quite the contrary. But unlike Germany, they perceive military power as a robust tool in international arena and additional method of the influence in foreign policy.

Finally, it is true the idea of the creation of ESDP has born because of the conflicts in the Europe’s backyard (i.e., Balkans); however after a decade the EU has been broaden their span of the operations quite significantly. The global role of the EU is formulated in the ESS in ethical terms of defending human rights and promoting democracy and solidarity (Petersburg tasks). Nonetheless, despite the general vision of the Three towards the global role of ESDP, some specifications ought to be made. Firstly, it is noteworthy to underline that the visions of France and Britain are getting to the same direction concerning mentioned issue, because it is relatively dictated by the permanent seats on the UN Security Council, as well as former colonial majesty of these countries. Moreover, one can clearly recognize that both countries paid special attention to the Africa. On contrary, Germany has usually not perceived the EU as a global actor, as it is dictated by the troublesome history. In the beginning they saw ESDP as a solution to the threats within the EU, but later they began to agitate the questions of the Caucasus, especially in Georgia. This could mean that Germany is reviewing its role as both the EU’s role in the light of globalization.

Therefore we may conclude that lack of unity in outlook of these countries, is a certain barrier for further development of ESDP. At the beginning of ESDP creation it was foreseen to become a common policy, but in reality decision-making process is based on intergovernmental cooperation which raises some additional obstacles during this process. Certainly it doesn’t mean that each country should change its opinion, but still general model for solving different situations and questions, as well as common vision of ESDP essence should be established. Nonetheless, despite all mentioned above ESDP working and developing, that is the fact that EU – 3 can find compromises. Thus, these difficulties can be resolved, if compliance of the Three will be greater.

US attitude toward ESDP

No less important factor is the U.S. attitude to ESDP. American view towards European security concept is resemblance to an opponent who does not agree with the arguments put forward, but believes that the honest expression of negative attitudes towards them will look clearly in unethical manner. One of the key factors influencing the U.S. position on the European security concept is its interaction with the structure of the North Atlantic Alliance. On this account quite explicitly suggested U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, explained: “Our position is very clear – we support ESDP, which is friendly to NATO’’[6]. On the other hand, Principal Analyst for European Union Affairs, US Dept. of State, David Armitage highlighted other US arguments against the existence of ESDP as follow:

  1. there would be competition for scarce financial resources;
  2. it could lead to a potential mismatch in doctrine, standards, and requirements, which would make interoperability (a perennial NATO problem) even harder to achieve;
  3. erecting new institutional structures would confuse and complicate procedures and policies that already existed within NATO. [7]

U.S. attitude to ESDP depends on U.S. policy, which is based on U.S. global leadership by deterring the emergence of rival powers.[8] As a result, the U.S. tries to keep ESDP within NATO.

It is true that NATO-EU relations are based on agreements of “Berlin Plus”, which were signed in December 2002 and entered into force in March 2003. So, it’s easy to see why Washington seemed that “Berlin Plus” gives it some advantages. EU guaranteed access to opportunities and resources of NATO planning for the implementation of EU operations for crisis management, and in return the United States expects from the EU a greater commitment to modernize its military capabilities. Main premises of Berlin Plus was that ESDP would reinforce NATO, not undermine it, and would ensure the advancement of the American position of “three principles’’: there is no uncoupling of NATO, no duplication of resources and no discrimination against non – EU members of NATO[9].

Besides, U.S Congress and administration were also encouraged by the fact that a close friend of the United States, United Kingdom, endorsed the project. However, European countries have not agreed to increase their military commitments in terms of defense spending and personnel. As noted in the U.S. Congressional Research Service, “French officials long time argued that the EU should strive to become a counterweight to the United States on the international stage, and consider ESDP as a means of enhancing the political credibility of the EU”[10]. Therefore, the United States has every reason to revise the terms of the treaty of ‘’Berlin-Plus’’.

Moreover, US worry that stronger ESDP would create European caucus inside NATO. Videlicet, NATO MS that are not EU members could be faced with unified front on the part of EU members in discussions within NATO. EU enlargement, however, has diminished the prospect of such a caucus emerging.

Nevertheless, recently the US attitude to ESDP has been changed towards more positive direction. Firstly, US understood that EU posse’s stronger base to tackle with the civil questions. Secondly, in 2005 US political elite with the G. Bush in a lead announced that they actually support more powerful and unified Europe. Over and above, 9/11 that was an example of new security challenges brought to acknowledgement of necessity to gather all efforts together in order to solve these problems.[11] Therefore, powerful Europe is in the area of the US interest.

As seen from the above relationship between U.S. and EU is quite complex. In the words of F. Stephen Larrabee, there are several steps that could persuade United States that ESDP strengthens rather than weakens the transatlantic relationship.

First, due to the fact that the EU and the US interests on some security issues are different, especially concerning participation on some recent conflicts. The US should agree that EU should be able to plan and act as an autonomous organization outside of Alliance. Therefore, EU should develop their capabilities if they want to play on their own in the conflicts of EU interest. The main intent is to assure development of EU security capabilities in an apparent manner which further would strengthen the ability of US and EU to efficiently deal with potential security threats.

Second, establishment of common strategies concerning transformation process of the defence issues of both players, the EU and the US. In the other words common treat perceptions and military doctrines, or at least well-matched, would be a great advantage in the future relationship between these parties.

Third, it is necessary for NATO and the EU to build up system that would enhance quick and comprehensive response in crises time. Primarily it consists of planning mechanisms, force generation and ameliorate political consultation.

As a final point, US should accept that the EU is becoming an ever more important political and security actor.[12]

To conclude this chapter, I would emphasize that ESDP has been created during the hard time for the Europe, when it has faced such challenge, as remain under the NATO security umbrella, which showed that it will not always work in compliance with the Europe security issues, or make a real breakthrough towards the role of an independent actor in the World arena. Eventually step forward has been made, so at present the Europe has demonstrated itself competent at all areas, not only economical questions, but also in the defence and security sphere. Significant part of ESDP establishment has been made by the EU – 3, however the Three showed not only progress in the history of the Europe, but to some degree doom ESDP to future problems, because of the different visions on future of this policy. Then, the relationship with the US as well as its partial influence on the Europe should not be forgotten. In other words, political context of ESDP is tangibly hampers the effectives of its development for the reason of inability of the EU – 3 to get to the common point of view, also because of the indirect influence of the US through the NATO, which for a long time has been a strong guarantor for the European defence and still remain to be such. In the next chapter will be analyzed two main problems which hamper development of ESDP, namely resource and institutional difficulties. Great role in the resolving of these problems plays ability of states to find compromises, and primarily in concern of the MS.

Obstacles which hampers development of the effective ESDP

Institutional pathologies of ESDP

This subsection will address the main shortcomings of the institutional architecture of ESDP. Taking into account the main question of this work, the explanation about all institutions and their functions would be skipped. Thus, emphasis will be placed only on these problematic points that hinder ESDP effective existence.

Since the inception of ESDP it was envisaged that the EU would largely pay attention to civil elements of security, but unfortunately the creators of the institutional architecture missed this important point, and suggested such basis for the institutional structure where military part has playing predominant role.

Firstly, it’s necessary to stress that many of experts argue that the EU build up ESDP taken as an example the NATO institutional structure. The main institutions in ESDP are the Political Security Committee, a political body that controls the institution, and the EU Military Committee with the EU Military Staff. This corresponds to NATO’s North Atlantic Council (NAC), the Military Committee (MC) and the International Military Staff. The British official was fast to point out that the architects of ESDP were aware that NATO’s institutional design, in which the NAC and the MC are often not well coordinated, was not optimal, but they did not discuss the issue of trying to redress this set up.[13] As a result one can observe quite complicated cooperative actions between these bodies of ESDP, during the preparation phase and realization of their plans. The actual EU military crises response planning process at political and strategic level could be seen at Annex 2.

Secondly, taking into consideration the treats what nowadays facing ESDP during its operations one can clearly identify the need for close cooperation between military and civilian in their coherence discussion. Some speakers argued that institutional coherence between the Council and the Commission had improved greatly in recent years, for instance in Georgia. But some processes are very slow – the Commission, for instance, cannot easily re-direct aid spending to a country where there is an ESDP operation (i.e. Chad). Plus the Commission, in particular ECHO (its humanitarian aid agency), must remain neutral in conflicts and avoid becoming politicized.[14] Expert commentator on peacebuilding and security issues Rory Keane insist that the Union had constructed some crisis management capability and a foreign policy, but suffered from poor coordination between the two. The Lisbon treaty seeks more coherence between the Council and the Commission.[15] From these arguments one might conclude that ESDP doesn’t have practical useful chain of command and possesses significant internal difficulties.

Thirdly, after analyze of the development of institutional architecture of ESDP throughout the last few years, I can clearly see two problematic issues related to this policy. The first and main problem is that the structure of EU crisis management at the political, strategic and operational level remains weak. I could even say that this structure does not meet the ambitions of the EU on carrying out a large number of operations. In fact, notably on the civilian side, it is already stretched to the limit. On the military side, in the absence of EU operational headquarters, the Union remains a non-autonomous actor and the availability of national HQs to plan and run ESDP operations has proven intermittent. [16] Besides, at present time an important area of concern remains to be improved which is experience and expertise of the staff in Brussels-based bodies that can ensure proper planning and conduct of operations, both civilian and military ones.

Despite of everything mentioned above the MS diligently working on closing of these institutional gaps. Enormous role in improvement of the institutional shortages will be played by the Lisbon Treaty, which is already a fact that MS trying to find compromises.

The essence of the resource problems of ESDP at the present time

Financing ESDP

The first aspect to point out is the fact that the EU does not have its own defense budget. On the other words, each country decides itself how much it needs to spend on defense sphere. Therefore, the EU itself cannot change it, because it is not within its authority. In general, all EU member countries spend over 200 billion Euros on defense, ranking second place in the world after the U.S.[17] Which seems to confirm the idea that such amount of money would be enough for the effective existence of ESDP, if there were a common budget.

Thus, it is worth to start with question how ESDP missions financed? The answer is that in compliance of the Treaty of European Union operating expenditure incurred in implementing CFSP and ESDP decisions is charged to the budget of European Communities (European budget), except for the operations that have military character.[18] In other word, EU have a common budget they have to allocate money for definitive period of time, with a special procedures which is not very clear and fast, which should be the first aspect of the financing system for the crises response operations in order to win the time for the preparation of the mission.

Then, it should be noted that there is a difference in the budgeting between military and civilian operations in the framework of ESDP. Thus, civilian operations are financing by the EU and related to the CFSP budget (EU Budget, Heading 4: EU as a global player).[19] If we analyze all the costs of the section «EU as a global player», we can see that it is only 3% of the entire section. Moreover, after analyzing the specific data in Annex 1 you can see a decrease of CFSP budget on 14% compared with last year, which is in my opinion not enough if we look back at the problems with the financing in ongoing missions and take into account that EU should be ready for the new threats which the World possess nowadays.

Furthermore, the decision-making process of the allocation of money from my perspective is not very consistent and it is as follows, following a proposal from the Commission, the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament – the two branches of the EU budgetary authority – agree the exact size of the CFSP budget. The dialogue between the Council and the Parliament is crucial in this context, and it has not always been smooth. This is perhaps inherent to a policy area such as CFSP where, by Treaty, the EP has the last word on the budget but limited say on substantial political decisions.[20] Thus after analyzing the decision-making process of the European budget, I came out to the solution that it is obvious picture of bureaucratic system, what is in my point of view unavoidable situation in any intergovernmental organization.

However, in case of preparatory actions for the preparation of the crises response missions has been made significant changes between 2006 and 2007, such as enabling the Commission to fund “preparatory measures� from CFSP budget. Moreover in 2008, the Commission adopted a framework decision specifying what costs the preparatory measures for ESDP operations can cover the procedure to finance them. The specificity of these measures is that they can make funds available before the relevant legal act is adopted.[21] Therefore, the first step towards activation of mission and preparation for it could be partly supported from the first day.

Conversely, it is still lack of financing for ESDP missions as one could witness in the Financial Framework 2007-2013, where the CFSP budget for is €1.98 billon.[22] The budget is expected to cover crisis management operations (civilian ESDP missions only), conflict prevention, conflict resolution and stabilisation, non-proliferation and disarmament measures and EU Special Representatives. Besides, two problems had been directly associated with the 2007-2013 EU budgets in the word of the researcher from German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Annegret Bendiek:

  • lack of democratic control over common defence policy activities and the related spending;
  • MS have provided insufficient resources to fund the EU’s ambitions become a fully-fledged actor in its foreign and security policy, meaning that additional money has to be diverted from sources outside the budget.[23]

It is important to add that ESDP military operations are financing through separate inter-governmental arrangements the so called “Athena mechanism�, which is covering preparatory phase of the operations. All the MS (except Denmark) contribute to certain expenditure, strictly defined, according to a fixed coefficient depending on their GDP scale.[24] However, this funding only covers 10 % of total operation costs. In other words, the biggest burden for the operation covers by contributing nation. The ATHENA budget (financed by 24 MS) in 2005 it was approximately 60 million Euros, for 2006, the budget was about 68 million Euros[25] Overall, there is ongoing work concerning increasing the budget for Athena mechanism by the MS, but yet no consensus has been found between them.

Military capabilities

The first issue is that the EU does not have its own Armed Forces, as well as its own defence budget. Therefore, each MS maintain autonomy of their Armies, and can decide about contribution to every particular mission. Regardless of significant EU expenditure on defence sector, MS did not change completely their Armed Forces posture after Cold War toward nowadays global security challenges. In Annex 3 we can see the progress of ESDP military capabilities by comparing MS equipments in 1999 and 2009.

Besides, it is ongoing transformation of the Armed Forces of the MS from the previously Cold War doctrine; therefore, in 2008 the 27 EU governments had reduced their armed forces to 2 million personnel, and just over 200,000 conscripts. Nevertheless, European Defence Agency (EDA) data shows that in 2007 the 26 MS of EDA (Denmark is not a member) could deploy 444,000 soldiers, but could only sustain 110,000 on international operations.[26] This is very difficult for the ad hoc operations overseas, when European Armed Forces are committed in ongoing EU, UN, NATO operations.

Furthermore, it is worth to highlight that after the EU Helsinki summit of 1999, EU governments supposed to create by the end of 2003, European Rapid Reaction Forces (ERRF) with the number of 60,000 troops (deployable within 60 days, and capable of staying in the theatre of operation for up to one year) in order to fulfill Petersberg tasks. The goal has been achieved, however as the MS declared it was only quantitative level and the full ambition was never tested.[27] Besides, later on the EU decided to change the ERRF which was not adequate answers to rapid crisis response, to the model of more smaller deployable troops with the number of 1,500 troops (which can be deployed in 10 days after the Council’s decision, for operations lasting up to four months), namely EU Battlegroups, which would be more capable in peacekeeping operations. According to the Council of the EU, full operational capability was established in early 2007.[28] Therefore, one can see that EU making significant steps for the establishment of adequate forces in order to tackle with the contemporary treats, but yet these capabilities have not been tested in reality, also the question about deployability is remaining open in case of airlifting capabilities.

The first problem for the quick deployment of troops is equipment, which is remaining to be an obstacle for ESDP ambitions. The main problems in this area are lack of transport planes and helicopters. Firstly, for helicopters the problem lies rather in quality and availability rather than the quantity of EU transport helicopters. Many of the EU’s transport helicopters are unusable in certain types of conditions, such as Javier Solana, the former High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy, described the problem at a March 2009 EDA conference in the following terms: “We are all aware that there is no shortage of helicopters in Europe. Inventories are high in numbers but the problem is that they are not deployable outside Europe in sufficient numbers“[29]. Secondly, it is strategic transport planes which is a weak point of the EU, because the actual number of these aircraft is just 8 (C-17s) and as one can see today it is not enough to tackle contemporary security treats. As an example, one of the reasons EU governments could not help South East Asia after the 2004 tsunami was because they did not have enough long-range transport planes.

It is known that no one from MS can afford to produce or to buy the full range of military equipment. One of the ways how to deal with such a problem is to create a multinational defence equipment program. Despite the fact that common defence equipment projects would strengthen the work together, increase interoperability in missions, decrease countries expenditure on necessary armament. This issue remains to be more national rather than European. For instance in 2007, the MS spent approximately 32 billion EUR on investments in equipment procurement, but only 6 billion on joint programs[30].

The other side of this problem is a great waste of money on procurement of almost the same type of equipment from different suppliers. One of the examples is an unnecessary spending on major equipment programs is combat aircraft. In spite of heavy competition from the US, Europe has developed three parallel types such as: the Swedish Gripen, the French Rafale and the German-British-Italian-Spanish-built Eurofighter. A global market of approximately 3,000 units is predicted for the new US Joint-Strike-Fighter, but the order for European aircraft is much lower: Gripen (204), Rafale (294), Eurofighter (620)[31]. Consequently one could conclude there are significant areas for improvement in this issue in order to avoid unnecessary spending of money for procurement and time for research and development.

Nonetheless, from the beginning of establishment ESDP has been trying to improve, therefore in last chapter I will explain the possible solution of mentioned shortcomings by the analyze of EDA which has been created in order to support the MS and the Council in their effort to improve European military capabilities in the field of crisis management and security issues.

Civilian resources for ESDP

Let me start by considering the fact that for the period of ESDP existence under the auspices of the EU was launched 19 civil missions, it is impressive number if we take into account the age of this institution, but still there are a number of problems that are stand in the way of effective holding of civil operations. One of the major problems is the lack of joint recruitment system for civilian operations. In December 2008 the EU member countries have made commitments to adopt national strategies for recruiting staff for ESDP civil operations. This would be an important step in creating a future roster of staff at the EU level. But these commitments have not yet fulfilled by countries. The problem is compounded by a sharp decline government financing because of the current economic crises.

An equally important problem is the lack of the required number of professionals such as police, judges, rule of law experts, as well as qualified personnel in administration, finance and procurement. Currently the EU is trying to improve this, for example, with sponsorship of Commission has been held training of the EU countries staff relating to the Civilian Response Teams and 600 policy experts through the French ‘Centre National de formation de gendarmerie’.[32] It is necessary to increase the training of specialists in all countries, and it would be great if countries would encourage the exchange of citizens for training. Moreover, there is a problem in the mobilization of personnel from different countries in the shortest possible time.

Then, it is important to add that increasing number of civil operations in recent years raises the question of the creation certain stock of basic equipment and services. There are several options for establishing such a reserve, it can be, or virtual store on the basis of framework contracts, or a real warehouse. There is also the question of the choice for MS pledging civilian personnel for an ESDP mission versus being needed in their own State, or even for other peace operations by the UN, OSCE or various “coalitions-of-the-willing�. Although there are some 1.6 million EU personnel available, only 5000 are pledged and 2000 deployed because of competing demands[33].

In view of these facts, it is quite likely that the solution to all problems lies at the national level. The reasoning for MS to commit resources and personnel for civilian missions needs to be strongly justified if citizens and parliamentarians are to agree to both the financial and human resource expense for ESDP missions.[34] That is, there is a need for new national strategies for gathering civil assets.

Moreover, the human dimension has been neglected as well – nearly sacrificed – for EU “visibilityâ€?. The necessity to be seen on-the-ground, and quickly, means that some missions have not fully consider through what expertise is needed; where it is needed; and given sufficient time for proper pre-deployment training. Besides, ESDP review about vis-à-vis per diems, hardship pay and risk elements that personnel undertake.[35] That is why, in my opinion lessons learnt from the previous deployment of any kind of operations is really helpful, but still not all shortcomings identified in the past taken into account because of the time shortage, or financial problems, therefore a considerable gap for improvement remains at the place.

Then, the last but not the least challenge for the civil missions is a structure of operation planning body. The integrating the civilian and military elements of crisis management operations raise up enormous challenges while at the same time reiterates a well-known argument: the enhanced and concerted coordination among all actors involved in crisis management and peace operations is critical to achieving long-term peace and security[36]. In other words the synergy into planning of comprehensive operation with the civil and military character is not fully appropriate at the present time. Furthermore, an administrative and financial support functions are dispersed between civilian missions themselves, the Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability and the Commission.[37] Therefore, the establishment of single agency for Crises Management would centralize all mentioned functions; as well it would bring synergies and raise efficiency at the long term perspectives.

To sum up this chapter, I would say the evolution of ESDP has been made a considerable progress, however the great part of it still should be made. Analyze of the institutional architecture gives me an opportunity to make several important conclusions. Firstly, one should give a credit to the EU, because independently from the problem that exists on the way of development of this policy, its architecture has been developing. Practically during the first years of existence has been created necessary mechanism for the conduct of operations, yet not autonomous, but still operations. Secondly, substantial effort should be made for the improvement of the inter-pillar and cross-pillar coordination mechanism of ESDP, as an ability to carry out its functions, greatly dependant from the quality of cooperation with other institutional subjects on the EU level as well as on the national level. Thirdly, institutional practice and reforms could not be considered in isolation from parallel events on political and operational levels, including development of strategic priorities of ESDP and lessons learned in this area.

In the matter of resource problem, then the main essence of this trouble corresponds to the necessity of an adequate quantity of resources for ESDP effective functioning. This issue remains from the beginning of the establishment of the policy, when the number of the operations starts to rise. The solution of this impediment corresponds to the national level, only MS desire and readiness would recover this illness. Lastly, the economical crisis has been substantially shaking the ability of the MS to increase its expenditure in this sphere, therefore the last hope will lay on the close cooperation between them. As one can see ESDP has a lot of gaps, but don’t forget that this policy is quite young, for addition special measures for the elimination of these problems always in process by the implementation of different projects and activities. In particular, overview of solutions would follow on in the next chapter.

Taken steps towards development of the effective ESDP

Probable solution of an institutional and resource weaknesses by the Lisbon Treaty

The Lisbon Treaty (LT) went through a very complex way of approval, nonetheless it has been sign at the EU summit already at 2007; it has entered in force only in 2010. This chapter will overview the innovations that LT brings into ESDP, besides it will highlight the possible solutions for the problematic ESDP areas which has been arisen above, such as institutional and recourse impediments to progress of the policy.

The changes’ concerning ESDP has a substantial part in LT in comparison with previously adopted agreements (Key changes see Annex 4). Regulations of LT concerning the Common Security and Defence Policy (ESDP renamed by the LT to CFSP), does not infringe upon any of the MS interests (in the compliance to the UN Charter), any decision in this area has to be made unanimously, with the exception to do any change to this procedure by the qualify majority. Furthermore, a transition to the common defence policy should be made in accordance with unanimous decision of the EU Commission, besides LT introduce so called “Solidarity clause� which is refer to collective defence in case if a MS is a victim of armed aggression on its territory, the other MSs shall have towards it an obligation of aid and assistance by all the means in their power.[38] This commitment shall not prejudice the specific character of the security and defence policy of certain MS (neutral or bonded by special agreements) and agreement in the framework NATO-EU cooperation.

At the first glance, LT is vaguely interpreting the problem of increasing the resource capabilities, it is simply emphasize that “MS shall make civilian and military capabilities available to the Union for the implementation of the common foreign and security policy, to contribute to the objectives defined by the Council�.[39] However, if one takes into account the innovations foreseen by the Treaty, one should certainly identify the intention to strengthen shortages in this area. First of all, it is about the creation of so-called proto­col of “Permanent Structured cooperation� (PSCoop). It means that the MS which would like and able to work more closely in the field of military cooperation, will have opportunity to do so in the framework of PSCoop, besides it is not obligatory for every MS to participate in such activities. At the present time such type of cooperation has not been used, because of pendency of some provisions of such cooperation: who can participate; what results are expected from such cooperation; peculiarity of such cooperation. At the present time just general criteria for the participants exists:

  1. their willingness “to proceed more intensively� to develop their defence capacities through the development of their national contributions and participation in the respective multilateral endeavours;
  2. their capacity to supply capabilities, either at national level or as a component of multinational force groups, structured at a tactical level as a battle group.[40]

Therefore the goal of the PSCcoop is a broadening of the EU operational potential, by the means of MS combined effort.

Then, not less important moment in the development of defence sector that is LT refers for the first time to EDA which was set up by the MS in 2004. Its goal is to improve the military capacities of participating states so that they can better support the treaty-defined functions of the EU’s security and defence policy. This does not necessarily imply additional military spending. The emphasis is upon more focused and coordinated military spending so as to maximise possible economies of scale. By designing, tendering, manufacturing, and/or buying such equipment together, European governments can potentially improve their respective military capacities at a net saving to the taxpayer. In the next subchapter I will elaborate more deeply concerning the improvement of military capabilities via EDA.

Secondly, in regards to the fixing of an institutional problem by LT, it is noteworthy to analyze some considerable innovations of the Treaty, which entrust to develop effectiveness of ESDP. Institutional innovations of LT contain a series of changes designed to render the EU a more coherent actor in the field of CFSP/ESDP. One of the most significant institutional newness related to the creation of the double headed position of High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice- President of the Commission (HR/VP), this position has influence at both first and second pillar of EU, consequently it would definitely build up such necessary coherence in between these institutional bodies.[41] Moreover, the position would be more practical toward representations of EU in international arena, because of merging positions of Commissioner for External Relations and High representative for CFSP, as well as continuity and visibility of these visions would be assured by a European Council permanent president that would stay in charge for a two and half years[42]. Therefore, it erases unnecessary duplication of former positions and in my point of view would enhance cooperation between Commission and Council.

Besides, in support of HR/VP has been created new institution, the European External Action Service (EEAS). It will be recruited from national civil servants, the council Secretariat, and the Commission. Furthermore, the role of the military within EEAS remains open, but it is obvious their expertise will be needed to enable EEAS dealing with military and defense questions in due course.[43] It is planned that this entity would be autonomous from the Council and Commission. With its unique nature EEAS is created to overcome the institutional pathologies and lay the basis for a more coordinated and coherent EU foreign policy.

To conclude this section, I would certainly underline that the successes of ESDP will depend not only from the newly adopted LT but also from the political will of the MS towards realizations of the common responses on the security issues. Though, only practical experience will show to what extent an innovations and changes mentioned above will improve effectiveness of ESDP.

In search of an adequate quantity of resources for the EU ambitions.

Increase of military resources for the future needs of the EU.

This subchapter would pay special attention towards the concrete steps into settlement of the military resource problem in the framework of EDA. Besides, it is noteworthy to emphasize, recently EU member-states agreed to a “Declaration on strengthening military capabilities�, it is bright sign of necessity to develop military capabilities altogether. Indeed, we can recognize the first step of pooling together military resources by the establishment of multinational battle groups, to which majority of MS contribute.

The first steps for the resolving of arisen military resource problems was developed and approved in 2006, EDA guidance such as Long Term vision (LTV) for European defence capability and capacity needs focusing on the 2020-2025 time frame. In the words of Javier Solana, the former Head of the Agency: “This fascinating document offers planners, working their way through the fog of the future, a shared and stimulating analysis of some of the major trends that will shape that future�[44]. Then, the next step had been a creation of Capability Development Plan (CDP) in 2008, by means of cooperation of EDA and EUMC. The CDP is not limited to specific list of necessary resources for ESDP missions, but also present the picture of possible future shortcomings, based on existing actives and missing capabilities. The plan itself is a strategy, but as everybody knows strategy by itself does not provide capacities, these have to be generated through concrete projects and activities.

Therefore it has been depicted some of the most important projects and initiatives, as this paper has its limitations:

Firstly, concerning mentioned shortcomings in the sphere of helicopters, such as quality and training of the crews for operating in different circumstances. In order to improve these deficiencies in 2010 has come into force, the Helicopter Tactics Training Programme[45], for the training of helicopter crews at the European level to operate in difficult environments. Besides, the task for upgrading helicopters for the future security challenges has been implemented by EDA which is working closely with the European helicopter industries.

Secondly, concerning the air lift capabilities, here is also EDA ongoing work. Such as, a Declaration of intent which has been signed by the 12 EU states in order to launch EDA work on establishing a European Air Transport fleet[46], with an objective to eliminate deficiencies in the air transport capabilities by increasing of quantity of such aircraft as A400M and C130. Furthermore, the Ministries of Defence of Belgium, Germany, France and Luxemburg agreed to establish Multinational A400M Unit.

Thirdly, about the improvements in the maritime dimension, where ten MS plus Norway has started the project under the auspices of the EDA concerning renovation of existing generation of Navy Mine Counter-Measures (starting in 2018-2020 timeframe)[47]. Another group of seven MS have started preparation for development of a Future Unmanned Aerial System, able to take off and land on a ship’s deck, in order to increase the capability of wide area surveillance, which is related to EDA’s work in Maritime Surveillance.

Despite of mentioned projects of EDA it is worth to mentioned that this organization deeply concern and work on such projects: Space-based Earth Surveillance, Unmanned Air vehicles, Network enabled capability, CBRN, Counter-IED, Intelligence, Logistics, Software defined radio, 21st century soldier systems an other, which is in my point of view strong point toward concrete solutions of present recourse inadequacies.

Besides that, in the EDA’s agenda is running two main Research and development activities; with the main effort to prepare the Research & Technology Joint investment Programme (JIP) on force protection 2006, with the main goal in connecting and selecting capability areas with technology goals. The investments of nineteen MS plus Norway to this program consist approximately from 55 million of Euro[48]. Second, JIP dedicated to ‘Innovative concepts and emerging technologies’ in 2008, with the main aim to look into technologies such as nano-materials and structures, remote detection and health monitoring. Last emphasize is about established by the EDA “European Defence equipment market�, with an agenda to increase competitiveness of the European military industries, thus the market of military goods would be more transparent for the MS.[49] In order to achieve this goal EDA has developed and implementing into life ‘Intergovernmental regime to increase competition in the European defence equipment’. Therefore the contest among the equipment market members might enhance the quality of the product and make it cheaper than before.

To summarize all mentioned above, I can conclude that because of an economical crisis in 2009 all MS have to decrease their expenditure on the military budget; therefore the only one way out of the situation is to invest together. Working in conference MS was able to decrease their expenditure, which was very important for them, besides I can stress the EDA is a right place for the development of such cooperation.

Amendment of the civil resources problems at the present time

From the previously mentioned, one can identify that nowadays civilian operations are in-demand and place for improvement remains. Therefore, for further development and consolidation of ESDP civilian capabilities, has been established Civilian Headline Goal 2010 (CHG 2010), with the main aim to fix results that have been identified after achievement of CHG 2008 and on the experience of ESDP crises management. Moreover, it should assist to ensure that the EU can conduct crisis management, in compliance with the ESS, by deploying civilian crisis management capabilities of high quality, with functions and equipment required for that.

The implementation of the CHG 2010 started with work on a new common test scenario that supports both civilian and military ESDP capability development processes, taking into account relevant capabilities available to the European Community.

Key areas of interest in current work include:

  1. Synergies – special attention will be dedicated to synergies between civilian and military operations as well as between ESDP and European Community activities.
  2. Human resources – work has begun on the development of a systematic approach regarding human resources with a view to putting in place a clear framework that would help to recruit and have in place the most qualified staff, so as to achieve best possible success in the area of civilian crisis management.[50]

Then, the deficiencies of strategic cooperation between the civil and military planning bodies will be rationalize by EU Council Secretariat in the nearest future by the establishment of the general planning cell, namely the Crisis Management Planning Directorate (CMPD). This logically follows on from the creation of the Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability over a year ago, which proved to be able to conduct operation. Such reorganization gives us the first signs of an integration of military and civilian functions and capabilities.

Further advance are expected in the area of personnel resources which are accompanied by the progressive development of the Civilian Capability Management Tool (CCMT) through a secure website empowered by a new software application called Goalkeeper 97. The CCMT includes comprehensive and permanently updated catalogues of mission tasks, standard job descriptions, equipment (including framework contracts) and concepts, and is expected to serve different purposes.[51] On the one hand, it supports the civilian capability development process by providing a clear overview of the different categories of personnel, as a basis to survey the availability of national resources and point at critical shortfalls. On the other hand, it aims to facilitate the planning of civilian missions and the recruitment of relevant personnel.

Finally, the aspect concerning rapid allocation of necessary funds is obviously improving. First of all the Commission plays an important role in strengthening civilian ESDP missions and, concretely, it manage the CFSP budget, which has increased steeply from EUR 30 million in 2002 to EUR 243 million in 2009 year, and is due to reach over EUR 400 million by the end of the current financial framework in 2013[52]. Then, the support by the Community for the Commission’s contribution to the Union’s general crises response has been playing a considerable role. With initiation of the Instrument for Stability which significantly increases financial allocations of the Commission’s crises response capability (approximately 130 million euro in 2009, with the duration of programs around 18 months)[53] in comparison with the Rapid Reaction Mechanism.

To summarise this chapter I would like to underline that the work towards improvement of the ESDP has been processing for the improvement in all mentioned above spheres such as institutional structure, military and civilian resources capacity. Moreover, the innovation of the LT ought to make ESDP more coherent and productive in case of cooperation between respective pillars and MS; however significant steps have to be done in the implementation phase of its provisions.


The decade of ESDP existence does not limit EU to conduct only 23 missions across the full range of conflict prevention, crisis management, and post-conflict peace-building tasks on the three continents of the World, but also step-by-step became an ever more active, capable and credible global actor in international peace and security environment. The analyze of the development of this policy had clearly demonstrate that during the progress of ESDP it has faced a lot of impediments and problems, such as shortage of resources, weakness of institutional component, absence of coherence between MS and even more which were not touched upon in this essay. But despite all of that, the numbers of EU autonomous operations are not decreasing, rather increasing in quantity and quality, which is conditioned by the necessity of the World to involve support from the EU in the field of crises management. Consequently, the EU should continue to strengthen their collective capacity and continue to move forward in a number of key areas.

Strengthening of the coherence is a fundamental moment for the development of ESDP effectiveness. Without such character of collaboration between the MS which is important on all levels of cooperation, such as finding an acceptable solutions concerning conducting of operations, increasing and modernizing the civil and military resources and all other aspects is negatively reflects on the effectiveness of this policy. The introduction of the LT should resolve the major part of this difficulty, first of all it concerns the institutional innovations, with the new post of a High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, assisted by the EEAS, should considerably increase effectiveness in the field of ESDP.

Founding of an adequate budget in order to support ESDP activities. Solution of this problem relies upon MS, which ought to understand that for the implementation of ESDP tasks, it is necessary to have available sufficient quantity of financial resources, not only preplanned but also in advance as it is very difficult to foresee possible future conflicts.

EU should continue to enhance national and multinational capabilities. In this area an important roles will be played by the three main components which are introduced by the LT: mechanism of Permanent structured cooperation, European Defence Agency, Civilian Headline Goals. At the present time the main effort of the EU is to implement PSCoop in order to make it profitable for the MS. Next critical momentum is continuation of the EDA effective work in the framework of CDP, Research and development activities and other spheres of this agency. Besides, no less important to continue development and implementation into life the CHG’s which contents lessons learned from the past. Also, hereafter ought to be strengthen the allocation of equipment and manpower, continue to share best practices, and further develop common training and exercising activities. The good news is that in the coming years, based on the current procurement plans, EU countries should have a number of new strategic capabilities such as: A400M and more C-17 transport planes; A330 air tankers, and Franco-British aircraft carriers. EU defence ministries will also be able to use Galileo – a satellite navigation system – to guide their equipment and define their positions. All this equipment will greatly add to the military prowess of Europe’s armies in the future[54].

Civil-military coordination. The Crisis Management and Planning Directorate will have a key role, under political and strategic guidance, in developing more coherent civilian and military strategic planning for ESDP missions and operations. The CMPD will also foster and coordinate work on synergies between civil and military EU capability development.

The creation of the effective and competitive European defence market. It would be precondition for receiving of top level defence capabilities trough out whole EU and probably further improve it at the global level.

Finally, I would emphasize that if EU will effectively work on elaborated in this paper problems, then ESDP will occupy even more considerable position in the sphere of guaranteeing of peace and security, not only on European continent but also more further from its borders. The main question is about how fast and effectively EU MS will implement into life all the provisions stipulated by LT, and the driving impulse for that will be only general understanding by all MS that they are a single entity, only after that one could argue that this is truly the Common Security and Defence Policy.


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