A Franco-Finnish industrial “virtual” seminar initiated by the Finnish Ministry of Defence with Business Finland and organized by the GIFAS and the AFDA, in collaboration with the French Defence Procurement Agency, took place on October 21, 2020 from Dassault Aviation Headquarters in Saint Cloud, in the presence of His Excellency Mr Teemu TANNER, Finnish Ambassador to France, and from Helsinki, in the Association of Finnish Defense Aerospace (AFDA) premises.
With the participation of Dassault Aviation, Safran, Thales, MBDA, and some thirty more members of the GIFAS, this seminar should enable the members of the Association represented by Mrs. Tuija KARENKO, its Secretary General, to benefit from the dynamics of a strong partnership with the French aerospace and defence industries.
The Directorate-General for Armaments, the French Defense Procurement Agency, fully mobilized for the occasion, presented a message recorded by the French Minister for the Armed Forces, Mrs Florence PARLY, in which she recalled the importance of bilateral relations and the attachment of both countries to European defence cooperation. Finnish Ministry of Defence delegation was led by Permanent Secretary Jukka JUUSTI and LtGen Raimo JYVASJARVI, National Armament Director.
The morning of this one-day event was devoted to presentations by government and industry representatives from both countries on their respective defence industries and associated business opportunities, as well as a panel discussion on participation in European Defence programmes funded by the European Commission (European Defence Industrial Development Programme-EDIDP and the European Defense Funds EDF).
The afternoon was dedicated to setting up of numerous B-to-B videoconferences meetings between Finnish and French companies and organizations (universities and R&D center).
Alongside the major Finnish defence companies already involved in industrial partnership projects, this seminar enabled many SMEs oriented towards new technologies (Artificial Intelligence, 5G, cyber-security, etc.) as well as scientific and academic circles to exchange and identify areas of cooperation with their French counterparts. The projects developed in the frame of these partnerships will contribute to guarantee the sovereignty and autonomy of defence procurement, a pillar of Finnish Defence and Security Policy.