The European Defence Agency on Europe's Future in a Globalizing World


For a number of years the European Union has been building a common European security and defense policy. The European Defence Agency (EDA) was established in 2004 “to support the Member States and the Council [of Ministers of the EU] in their effort to improve European defence capabilities in the field of crisis management and to sustain the European Security and Defence Policy.” A report prepared by EDA under the title An Initial Long-Term Vision for European Defence Capability and Capacity Needs was submitted to the Agency's Steering Board (the decisionmaking body on which the Defense Ministers of the Agency's 24 participating member states sit) on 3 October 2006. The report was endorsed by the Board “as a reasonable foundation for the EDA's medium-to-long-term agendas.” The 28-page document addresses its topic with a 20-year perspective in a global setting. It finds the perspective “sobering, with the central predictions of demography and economics foreshadowing a Europe which, two decades hence, will be older, less pre-eminently prosperous, and surrounded by regions (including Africa and the Middle East) which may struggle to cope with the consequences of globalisation.” Excerpts from the report are reproduced below. Paragraph numbers have been omitted. The full report is accessible at «».