Podcast S3E3 | The European Perspective for the emerging Cypriot Defence Industry
Defence Redefined
Published on 14/02/2023 at 12:02

In S3E3 of the DEFENCE ReDEFiNED Podcast, the President of the Cyprus Association of Research and Innovation Enterprises (CARIE), Dr. Tasos Kounoudis, and the Senior Officer of the European Defence Agency – External Support and Funds, Mr. Elias Hadjikoumis, discussed, among others, about the Cypriot Defence Industry, the US – EU – Cyprus relations and the benefits of collaborations with third countries.

The entire podcast can be accessed via a link found at the end of the article, whereas the highlights of the discussion are presented below.

European Defence Agency

Initially, Mr. Hadjikoumis spoke about the European Defence Agency (EDA) and its main mission.

Briefly, Mr. Hadjikoumis said that this is an Organization founded in 2004 and aiming to facilitate the development of the Defence sector among member-states. According to him, the Organization in question contributes its expertise and know-how in order to cover the entire spectrum of cooperation among member-states, from specifications and requirements to the development of prototypes and the coordination of members in joint exercises and cooperation programs.


Then, Mr. Kounoudes, answering the question “what is CARIE and what are its goals”, stated that it is an Association which was founded in 2010, primarily seeking the promotion of Research and Innovation in enterprises. To date, he continued, this Association has 45 members “running” innovation programs worth 30 million euros through their own facilities and infrastructure, thus contributing over 500 million euros to the domestic economy mainly through exports of services and products.

Mr. Kounoudes added that in 2019 a separate cluster was created within the Association, which intended in the creation of products specifically for the Defence sector. In 2023, the cluster in question will consist of 30 Cypriot companies which design and develop dual-use goods and technology intended for civilian and military use. In fact, the cluster has achieved a dynamic presence in the European defence ecosystem by participating in 17 joint planning and development programs worth 172 million euros.

Also read: Summing up the 1st International Conference on Defence and Security BATTLEFIELD ReDEFiNED 2023 | Photos and VIDEOS

Cyprus Defence Industry

Referring to the benefits of the participation of several Cypriot Research and Innovation companies – active in the Defence and Security sectors – in European cooperation programs with corresponding companies abroad, Mr. Kounoudes said that these programs are extremely competitive and very important for the European Union itself. He further noted that Cyprus has a dynamic presence because highly trained human resources are abundant and infrastructure investments have been made.

The participating companies’ goal is to become part of the supply chain by producing systems or subsystems of larger defence systems and eventually, when the product is released on the market, to be co-producers as well.

Mr. Kounoudes also emphasized that this is a long-term effort made through participation in overlapping programs, covering the entire production cycle of the product from design and development to inspection and production.

The purpose is, as he emphasized, primarily to prove to themselves and then to the competent decision-makers what they can do, so that a defence policy is followed, in which the domestic capability – required for many reasons – will be taken into account.

Also read: EDA | Approval of draft administrative arrangement between the European Defence Agency and the US Department of Defence

Ways and means of further strengthening the Cypriot Defence Industry

Taking the floor, Mr. Hadjikoumis argued that, in addition to participation in conferences, defence/security exhibitions and participation in European cooperation initiatives, the Cypriot defence industry could be further strengthened by strengthening human resources and limiting their rotation so that the acquired knowledge is not lost.

Furthermore, Mr. Hadjikoumis underlined that academic institutions must invest in Defence studies, which will have as a central axis the development of defence capabilities, while in every supply of equipment the transfer of know-how should be sought and transnational collaborations should be strengthened.

Finally, the two guests focused on the benefits of the “BATTLEFIELD ReDEFiNED 2023” International Defence and Security Conference for Cypriot defence companies, saying that it is important to have a “space” where agencies and entities can network, exchange ideas, make suggestions and showcase products.

Also read: BATTLEFIELD ReDEFiNED 2023 | The emerging Cypriot Defence Industry – EU Funding Opportunities

Check out the highly interesting podcast below:




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