MIL OSI-C. Mediterranean Region: Portugal
Hydrographic Institute hosts first establishment conference of NATO Maritime Geo-Meteorological and Oceanographic (GeoMETOC) as Center of Excellence.
At the opening session in Lisbon, the Minister of National Defense, João Gomes Cravinho, stressed the importance of the Atlantic Ocean as a space for dialogue, freedom and security, for NATO and for the country.
The meeting brings together representatives of the Supreme Command of the Alliance for Transformation (SACT), Maritime Command (MARCOM) and the following allied countries: Germany, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Slovenia, United States of America, Netherlands, Italy, Czech Republic and Turkey.
For João Gomes Cravinho, the large number of participants demonstrates the interest of this initiative in taking advantage of the advanced knowledge that exists in the Navy in the areas of information, geospatial, meteorology and oceanography.
The Minister also said that GEOMETOC’s candidacy for a Center of Excellence meets NATO’s current and future needs to reaffirm its maritime stance and to allocate more resources at the heart of the Alliance’s strategic interests, vital to the lines of communication.
Recalling Portugal’s commitment to other initiatives to maintain the Atlantic as a space for dialogue, freedom and security – such as the Defense Center for the Atlantic – João Gomes Cravinho hopes that the Atlantic countries’ response to extremism and violence, natural disasters, will be strengthened. and illicit activities at sea.
The Minister also noted that “in an increasingly volatile international context, where knowledge and technology provide a strategic advantage, the commitment to transforming the alliance must be valued and that is what this center intends to do” while highlighting technological and the military gains that GeoMETOC could bring to the Allies, hoping this will be an expert hub.
NATO Centers of Excellence are not part of the Alliance’s command structure and may be sponsored by one or more nations that offer recognized experience and knowledge that can benefit NATO, especially in supporting transformation. There are currently 25 accredited centers.
Portugal will host, in 2020, the United Nations Oceans Conference. The EU Presidency in 2021 will also prioritize EU-Africa relations, which provides an opportunity to respond to sources of maritime insecurity.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.