La ministre des Armées, Florence Parly, et la ministre de la défense de la République fédérale d’Allemagne, Ursula von der Leyen, se sont rendues le 6 février 2019 à Gennevilliers sur le site de Safran pour donner le coup d’envoi industriel du système de combat aérien du futur (SCAF).
Le SCAF est une coopération franco-allemande qui doit fournir aux deux pays les successeurs de leurs avions de chasse respectifs mais également des drones et missiles, l’ensemble formant un système intégré.
Les deux ministres ont annoncé deux jalons essentiels du développement de ce projet structurant pour l’Europe de la défense :
- Un accord industriel entre les deux motoristes français et allemand Safran et MTU
Safran et MTU ont signé lors de la visite des Ministres un accord de coopération industrielle pour la motorisation de l’avion de combat du futur. Cet accord sera suivi à la mi-année 2019 de la signature d’un contrat avec la France et l’Allemagne pour le démonstrateur du moteur de cet avion de combat de nouvelle génération.
- La notification du contrat de concepts et d’architecture du SCAF à Dassault et Airbus
Les ministres ont annoncé la notification à Airbus et Dassault d’un contrat d’architecture et de concepts pour le SCAF. Ce contrat permet aux industriels de définir les grandes lignes du SCAF et de chacune de ses composantes. 65 millions d’euros sont consacrés à ce contrat.
Par ailleurs la ministre des Armées a inauguré avec son homologue allemande la nouvelle plateforme de développement des aubes de turbine du site Safran de Gennevilliers et annoncé la notification à Safran d’un contrat d’études amont de 115 M€ pour les aubes de turbine de nouvelle génération (études dites « Turenne 2 »). Ces études permettront de gagner 150 degrés d’ici 2025 sur la température des turbines hautes pression de nos moteurs. Aujourd’hui, un moteur de Rafale supporte une température déjà très élevée d’environ 1850 degrés, il s’agit de rendre un moteur capable de supporter une température d’environ 2000 degrés. Ce type de développement technologique est essentiel pour le développement du moteur de l’avion de combat du futur.
Enfin, dans le cadre du « Plan action PME » porté par Florence Parly, Safran s’est engagé aujourd’hui, par la signature d’une convention, à apporter son soutien à la dynamique de ce plan, en favorisant l’ancrage territorial de nombreux emplois et en accompagnant la montée en puissance de PME et startups de défense.
Les étapes du SCAF :
Juillet 2017 - Conseil des ministres franco-allemand à Paris : le Président de la République française et la Chancelière de la République fédérale d’Allemagne affirment leur intention de renforcer la défense européenne, notamment grâce à des coopérations industrielles.
24 avril 2018 - Salon aéronautique ILA de Berlin : les chefs d’état-major de l’armée de l’air français et allemands, en présence des deux ministres de la défense, signent un accord définissant les besoins opérationnels (HLCORD) en présence des PDG d’Airbus et de Dassault.
19 juin 2018 – Conseil des ministres franco-allemand à Meseberg : Florence Parly et Ursula von der Leyen, ministres de la défense française et allemande, signent la lettre d’intention sur le SCAF.
19 novembre 2018 - Bruxelles : Florence Parly et Ursula von der Leyen se réunissent en marge d’un Conseil européen pour clarifier l’organisation industrielle du SCAF. En ressort notamment : 1. Une étude de concept et d’architecture confiée en co-leadership à Airbus et Dassault. 2. Une étude de démonstrateur « moteur » confiée à Safran en leader et à MTU en sous-traitant. 3. Une étude de démonstrateur « avion » confiée à Dassault en leader et Airbus en sous-traitant.
6 février 2019 - Lors d’une visite sur le site de Safran-Gennevilliers les deux ministres annoncent la signature du contrat d’architecture et de concept pour Dassault et Airbus, ainsi que l’accord entre Safran et MTU. Le SCAF est formellement lancé, les industriels sont au travail.
Les ventes de tabac en France continentale (janvier 2019)
First of all, I would like to thank Minister Gomes Cravinho for his invitation. For long enough, we were told a European defence was and had to remain a dream. I think our presence here today belies this statement and I am pleased that we can share our views on this challenge.
Our continent has been at peace for seventy years. But, today more than ever, this peace should not be taken for granted. We are facing growing threats.
First of all, threats on the European continent itself: from High North, the Baltic Sea, to Crimea and Eastern Ukraine and the Black Sea, by the use of force and intimidation, the rules-based international order resulting from the end of the Cold War has been challenged. From non-compliance with treaties such as the INF Treaty to violation of several European states’ sovereignty, the whole legal structure on which European peace relies is jeopardized.
Some threats are not specific to our continent. And most of them are of an international nature. The effects of climate change, the challenges of migration crises, pandemic risks, organized crime and jihadi terrorism,
which strikes our societies and our populations, are all constant warnings at the very gates of Europe.
Let us not forget the seemingly more distant challenges of Asia. The rise of China, also contesting the rules-based order and now having the second world military budget, and the uncertainties on the development of the Pyongyang regime are destabilising factors in the region.
We are also confronted with new, rising threats in space and in the digital world, which both offer our enemies the comfort of acting in the shadow. This provides the almost full guarantee of impunity to those who spy on or wish to interrupt service.
We are now living in a world where some States have the means to deny access to space; to deteriorate other countries’ space capacities through manoeuvres, or even the use of force.
We are now living in a world where cyber threats, whether emerging from State or non-State actors, can likewise affect our daily lives, from banks and finance to health or energy.
We can’t turn our back on these multiple challenges: it’s the very security of our citizens which is at stake.
Of course, NATO is and will remain the cornerstone of the collective defence of the European continent. France attaches great importance to the Alliance. Nevertheless, we need to do more by ourselves. The
United States themselves have been calling for Europeans to take a better share of the burden.
As things stand, we have to be realistic: our continent is not fully prepared to face all the challenges I just described.
First, we must invest more in our defence. Only four European countries currently make it to the world’s top fifteen defence budgets. The gap is widening with other major powers such as China or Russia, but also with our ally, the United States. This is being regularly pointed out by NATO. It was also clear in the EU’s last Coordinated Annual Review on Defence report, which was endorsed by EU Defence ministers in November.
Second, we need more interoperability between our armies and tightened cooperation between our defence industries. It sometimes even looks as if we were in a competition to develop separate capabilities, rather than actually cooperating. For instance, we have 17 different kinds of battle tanks and 20 different types of helicopters. This leads to costly and unnecessary duplication.
Last but not least, we have to build a common strategic culture. How can we act together if we do not share the same threat assessment? Having a shared analysis of our strategic environment underpins our efforts. Having a shared understanding of possible responses is crucial if we want to be really involved in operations together. Developing a common strategic culture will take time. But it is essential to ensure that we take greater responsibility for our own security.
I strongly believe that building Europe’s “self-sufficiency” is the answer we need to meet the challenges of the day. Developing such a “self-sufficiency” does not mean to do it alone. On the contrary. By having more capabilities, by being more able and willing, we Europeans will be better Allies. And I want to stress that point: we are not building this autonomy in opposition to our main Allies (the United States), but on the contrary, in full sync with them; one of the key objectives being to be able to act alongside with them.
A lot has been achieved to this end in the last two years. First of all, we set a high level of ambition with the twenty binding commitments of the Permanent structured cooperation (PESCO). They embody our ambition for European defence. We commonly pledged to increase our defence budgets, especially for investment and R & T projects; to be more ready to engage in operations, notably by being more interoperable and sharing costs more effectively; to develop capabilities in a collaborative way, we need to and strengthen our European industrial base.
We are now moving forward on all aspects of this strategic autonomy, namely our operational autonomy, a self-reliant technology and industry, and the development of a common strategic culture.
Regarding operational autonomy, we have strengthened our capacity to intervene when and where we want to.
A review of the Military Planning and Conduct Capability has just been conducted in order to better adapt to the needs of the European Union. Once created, the European Peace Facility will enable us to tackle an issue that we are facing every day in Central African Republic and even
in Mali: we are not currently able to equip our partners with lethal material. And this is likely to undermine our credibility! The European Peace Facility will give us this ability and will thus enhance European efficiency.
Building our strategic autonomy also implies to have an autonomous Defence Industrial and Technological Base. Self-reliant technology is essential to our political and operational autonomy.
The European Defence Fund, expected to be established by 2021, will strongly contribute to that. It will represent a major investment: around € 1.5bn per year. This accounts for nearly a quarter of the annual European investment in R & D. As a preliminary stage, the European Defence Industrial Development Program will start funding projects in a few months. It is a clear signal of the importance now given to innovation, which I believe is crucial for defence.
The Permanent structured cooperation contributes also greatly to self-reliant technology. Within the permanent structured cooperation framework, 34 projects have been launched in one year, showing the exceptional dynamism of European cooperation. And let us not just praise quantity but quality as well: for instance, the Tiger helicopter, which is used daily to fight terrorists in the Sahel, or the ESSOR project, for better interoperability between European military communications systems, in which Portugal participates.
The third level of self-sufficiency is the development of a common strategic culture between European countries.
To this end, we launched the EI2 last year, the European Intervention Initiative. The goal is pragmatic: to elaborate a common strategic
culture between European countries having the political will to act if needed and having the military means to do so. Along with Portugal, we are now 10 countries, committed to strengthening our ability to act together. The first meeting of defence ministers in EI2 format was organized in Paris on November 7th, resulting in the adoption of political guidelines, which are steering the ongoing military work. And let me tell you that this work is substantial! Focusing on blind spots, not covered neither by the EU nor by NATO, our teams are for example working on the coordination of our endeavour in the Sahel area, or the common response to potential disaster relief in the Caribbean.
What do we have to do next? Here I would like to share three thoughts with you about what I hope for our continent.
First, we have laid the grounds for this new stage of European defence in the last two years. Now it is time to deliver on our commitment.
This means meeting PESCO commitments, especially the first one: increasing our defence budgets. Our efforts here moving in the right direction are not there yet. We need to do more.
We also have to make PESCO projects happen. It means to ensure the effective implementation of projects already under way and to ensure a high level of ambition for the next series of projects. The High Representative's annual report on the implementation of the permanent structured cooperation, scheduled for March 2019, should be a key driver in this regard.
We also have to make the best use of the new EDF. I consider it as one of the major achievements of the last two years, which gives us the means to develop a true European defence industrial and technological base. In my opinion, it is a strong enabler towards a more sovereign Europe.
Second, we must reassure our non-European Allies and explain to our citizens what we are doing. A key success factor is to maintain political will over time. And that requires citizens’ support. We launched multiple initiatives in a short time, with the risk of being little understood by our citizens. We need to increase our efforts to explain. We need to convince our citizens of the benefits of a "Europe that protects".
Third, we have to go further in building our “self-sufficiency”. France has made several proposals in that regard. Our President suggested reinforcing European solidarity by strengthening Article 42.7 of the Treaty of European Union. We can build on the French experience of activation of the article in 2015. We should also work on rethinking the European security architecture, especially regarding arms control, in order to ensure the stability of our continent. We Europeans cannot remain spectators of our own security: we have to become key actors and promote our interest, including when agreements affecting European security are sealed without us.
At the end of the day, here is our ambition: to make ourselves, the Europeans, able to ensure our own security, to be ready to act whenever our interests are at stake – because we have the capabilities, a shared assessment and a common willingness.
Our two countries are already collaborating on various fronts. The Portuguese and French navies have started participating in common training. And not only training. In the Gulf of Guinea, Portuguese and French navies join forces to the benefit of maritime security. We are also strongly involved together in the stabilization of the Central African Republic, supporting the efforts of the UN and the EU.
In the end, we are all in the same boat. Building European defence will deepen our current collaboration and make us all stronger. Reinforcing our “self-sufficiency” will result in a better burden-sharing between Allies and us Europeans. We will have a more credible role within NATO, thereby contributing to the strengthening of the Alliance.
Let’s be more responsible Allies, more able and willing Europeans. Let’s invest in our defence tools together. Let’s be actors, not spectators of our stability and security.