European Defence Agency

European Defence Agency

Infobox European Union agency
name = European Defence Agency

location = Brussels, Belgium
x = 82
y = 140
pillar = Common Foreign and Security Policy
signdate =
establish = July 2004
director = Alexander Weis
budget = €32 million (2008) [ [ ] ]
administrative director =
website = []

The European Defence Agency (EDA) is an agency of the European Union based in Brussels. It is a Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) body set up on 12 July 2004, reporting to the Council of the European Union. The EDA serves all European Union member states except Denmark, which has an opt-out of issues relating to defence. [ [ European Defence Agency]]


The Council established the EDA "to support the Member States and the Council in their effort to improve European defence capabilities in the field of crisis management and to sustain the European Security and Defence Policy as it stands now and develops in the future”. Within that overall mission are four functions [ [ Background]] ;
*Developing defence capabilities.
*Promoting defence research and technology.
*Promoting armaments co-operation.
*Creating a competitive European defence equipment market and strengthening the European defence, technological and industrial base.


The body has a legal personality and is governed primarily by three elements [ [ European Defence Agency]] .
* Head of the Agency: Responsible for overall organisation and functioning, ensures implementation of guidelines and decisions, chairs ministerial meetings of Steering Board. Currently, Javier Solana (also CFSP High Representative) appointed at the agency's foundation (July 12 2004)
* Steering Board: The agency's decision making body, composed of the defence ministers of participating Member States together with a representative of the European Commission and led by the Head of the Agency [ [ Background]] .
* Chief Executive: Head of staff and responsible for supervision and co-ordination of units. Currently Alexander Weis [ [ New Chief Executive of the European Defence Agency Appointed] 24//05/07] .

As of 2007, EDA has a staff of around 100.


The European Defence Agency is a continuation of the work of the Western European Armaments Organization (WEAO) and the Western European Armaments Group (WEAG) - it effectively represents the transference of their functions from the WEU to the EU framework, and thus continues the decommissioning of the WEU.

Head of EDA

* Javier Solana, 2004-

Chief executives of EDA

* Nick Witney, 2004-2007
* Alexander Weis, 2007-

See also

* Western European Union (WEU)
* European Union defence procurement
* European Defence Initiative
* Military of the European Union

External links

* [ European Defence Agency] Official website (
* [ Council Joint Action 2004/551/CFSP of 12 July 2004 on the establishment of the European Defence Agency] Official website (
* [ European Defence White Paper] EU ISS Document
* [ European Defence] UK NGO website


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