France Pushes for EU Defence Industry

French Defence Minister Michele Alliot-Marie declared on Tuesday at a press conference in Paris that Europe needs an autonomous defence and security industry, with the participation of all member states.

The industry is to provide the means for addressing crisis management and the combat against terrorism and should not be bound by the Stability Pact, which limits the states’ public sector deficit, according to the Minister.

“You cannot choose between people’s lives and financial criteria”, she said, adding that it is necessary to create a European defence industry which operates outside the pressures of the US military industry lobbies.

France’s new budget sets aside an additional 7.5% increase for defence, which may include the building of a new aircraft carriers of the conventional type, or another nuclear one to operate alongside the Charles De Gaulle. It is likely that such an operation would be conducted as a joint venture with the United Kingdom, to provide jobs reciprocally and to reduce costs.

Emilie ACQUITAINE PRAVDA.Ru Paris France

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