Article from Ministry of Defence

Statement of Intent on Enhanced Operational Cooperation

Published

Statement of Intent on Enhanced Operational Cooperation among the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Denmark and the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Norway and the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Sweden (hereafter referred to as "the Participants").

Aim

The Nordic Defence Cooperation vision for 2025 was adopted at the Nordic Defence Ministerial meeting in Oslo on the 13th of November 2018. The vision states,

“We will improve our defence capability and cooperation in peace, crisis and conflict. We ensure a close Nordic political and military dialogue on security and defence. Acknowledging our different security affiliations, we pursue an agenda based on joint security perspectives, efficient and cost-effective cooperation to strengthen our national defences and the ability to act together.”

In light of the current security situation, cooperation and unity among likeminded nations is paramount. For this reason, we are determined to take combined measures aiming at enhancing and improving our ability to conduct military operations.

Scope

This trilateral Statement of Intent outlines the common ambition of the Participants to be able and ready to conduct operations in crisis and conflict if so decided, noting that Denmark and Norway plans to transfer command to NATO in crisis and war as applicable. In order to improve our interoperability and readiness to give military support among us we will undertake the necessary preparations, aimed at enhancing our defence capability and serve as a deterrent from aggression.

Any military action will be subject to separate national political decision-making processes. This trilateral Statement of Intent does not entail any mutual defence obligations.

Finland and Iceland are to be informed on a regular basis as the cooperation proceeds.

Actions (not limited to)

  1. Form a trilateral policy steering group with representatives from the ministries of defence.
  2. Task the military authorities to form a trilateral military coordination group.
  3. Conduct discussions based on common security concerns relevant for on-going and future military operations in the region.
  4. Discuss relevant national operations plans among Denmark, Norway and Sweden in areas of common concern and interest, in a reciprocal manner in order to be able to coordinate national operations plans.
  5. Conduct exercises and Table Top Discussions, based on the requirements of ongoing planning and existing plans.
  6. Explore the possibility of coordinating future national operations planning in areas of common concern.
  7. Explore the possibility of common operations planning in certain areas.

The abovementioned actions will focus on areas of common concern and interest, such as the southern parts of Scandinavia (Kattegat, Skagerrak, the Baltic Sea, the North Sea, the Danish straits and other surrounding areas as required) as well as on improving interoperability among our armed forces that enable common military action if decided. Such common military action may include protection of sea lines of communication and air and sea surveillance.

This trilateral Statement of Intent is not a legally binding commitment under national or international law and does not substitute for or invalidate any existing defence agreements, arrangements or memoranda of understanding among the Participants.

 

For the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Denmark
Trine Bramsen

For the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Norway
Frank Bakke-Jensen

For the Ministry of Defence of the Kingdom of Sweden
Peter Hultqvist