European Alliance Against Coronavirus discuss Clusters and Defence
On 15 June, the European Alliance Against Coronavirus discussed the development of the defence ecosystem and the role clusters play in it.
Julie Rafton-Jolivet from TECHTERA presented the European Project EU-ALLIANCE, which supports the internationalisation of dual-use technologies in the fields of technical textiles and other advanced materials, advanced technologies, and connectivity.
The project seeks to develop a better understanding of the US, Japanese, and South Korean markets – and the Canadian and Indonesian market in the future – and to help companies located in the EU access them. There are also cross-sectorial synergies with sports, mobility, and medicine for companies offering dual-use technologies.
Ziga Valic, OPTITEC, shared lessons learnt and success factors of the KETs4-Dual-Use project. He highlighted that defence is not the natural habitat for clusters but that they have started to become recognised as an interesting stakeholder on a national and European level. Especially in this ecosystem, companies need to adapt to the local culture and business practices, identify the market needs in the target countries, and plan activities in collaboration with local contacts.
Jakub Palowski, DEFENCE24 portal, gave on overview of the Polish defence and aviation sector, the largest defence market in Central and Eastern Europe. He described a substantial need of equipment procurement, the need to solve structural challenges, and the impact that the pandemic had on the sector. Clusters in this industry are diversified and focus on the manufacturing and export of dual-use goods. In Poland, the Aviation Valley and the Silesian Aviation Cluster are the biggest players.
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