LUXEMBOURG – On 17 November 2022, NSPA General Manager, Ms. Stacy Cummings, addressed the Conference of National Armaments Directors (CNAD) during its Autumn Plenary at NATO Headquarters in Brussels. The General Manager highlighted the Agency's main activities and the cooperation opportunities available to Allies and Partners in a rapidly evolving security environment.
The CNAD enables cooperation in the delivery of interoperable military capabilities to improve effectiveness across the spectrum of NATO's core tasks, including current and future operations. NSPA supports various CNAD's High Visibility Projects and other important multinational projects through acquisition, life cycle management and procurement. Key projects include NSPA's engagement in the NATO Alliance Future Surveillance and Control initiative, the Precision Guided Munitions project, in which NSPA facilitated nations commonly acquiring ammunition, the Next Generation Rotorcraft Capability on its Concept Stage and the Multi-Role Tanker Transport fleet, among others.
During her presentation, Ms. Cummings recalled nations' expressed need to adapt and invest in innovation and explained how NSPA has adapted to the new security environment to ensure it continues to meet the new and emerging demands of its customers in an efficient, effective and responsive way. The General Manager explained how nations could benefit from consolidating demand through multi-national, multi-year contracts for critical off-the-shelf military requirements and how NSPA could support these requirements.
"The current security environment reminds us that, beyond interoperability, interchangeable and common systems among Allies are a key strength for NATO. Allies and Partners would benefit by consolidating demand across multiple, willing nations and entering into multi-year contracts for critical, off-the-shelf military requirements" she highlighted, using NSPA's experience with NATO's High Visibility Projects, as examples of delivery." NSPA is well placed to play a role in consolidating national requirements into a clear signal and negotiate contracts with industry to expand capacity where needed, at a time when supply chains are struggling to meet this demand." she added.
Further to Ms. Cummings's address, Mr. Allan McLeod, NSPA Director of Life Cycle Management, highlighted the Agency's focus on the development of its acquisition pillar, in line with the North Atlantic Council's mandate." The Agency aims to be NATO's first choice for acquisition of multinational systems in order to deliver innovative and sustainable capabilities for the Alliance and nations. Our strategy therefore aims to establish a sufficiently resourced, comprehensive and responsive acquisition capability within the Agency with the right policies, tools, structure and skills to enable delivery of multinational major systems and equipment acquisition projects, including NATO common funded capability programmes. This capability will also be available to support single nation projects when required," he explained.
The Plenary meeting enabled other discussions with the Armament Directors on procurement, supply chain challenges, disruptive approaches to acquisition and capability development, and the delivery of innovative projects.