President Rumen Radev: I Do Not See the Future of NATO as a Market, But as an Alliance of Partners
I do not see the future of NATO as a market, but as an alliance of partners who together develop technologies and manufacture highly effective military equipment and demonstrate their unity, stated President Rumen Radev before journalists following the NATO Summit in Brussels. A strategic document outlining the Alliance’s agenda by 2030 was passed at the forum.
Mr. Rumen Radev mentioned the 2019 NATO Summit, where he raised the issue of the growing distance between NATO Member States, divided in manufacturers and buyers of military equipment. The Head of State noted that highly developed countries that manufacture and sell military equipment invest the 2% in their own economy and social system, thus developing them even further, whereas countries like Bulgaria with their limited capabilities and resources invest the 2% in the economy and social systems of the same developed countries.
“During the 2019 Summit I suggested passing measures to contribute to every major military deal to be combined with industrial cooperation and technology transfer programmes,” stated the Bulgarian President, and emphasised the fact that these proposals have been included in the NATO 2030 Agenda, developed by Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and his team.
The Bulgarian Head of State welcomed the implementation of this idea in two projects, notably developing a civil-military body for stimulating innovations in defence and creating an innovation financial fund. “Bulgaria must actively work in all directions so that our industry, science and youth can feel fulfilled and benefit from our NATO membership,” underlined Mr. Rumen Radev. The President announced that he had already held a conversation with Mr. Jens Stoltenberg for meetings with Bulgarian academia, military-industrial complex, Bulgarian start-up companies and research and development centres to be arranged following the establishment of such bodies.
Questioned about NATO’s policy regarding Russia and China, President Rumen Radev stated there has been no change in the Alliance’s position regarding Russia since 2014 and that the approach towards China is prudent as the country is a significant economic partner of the NATO Member States.
The strategic vision for the Alliance’s adaptation to new challenges, cybersecurity, climate change and the countries’ approaches for overcoming the pandemic were also among the topics discussed during the Summit in Brussels.