Summary: EDIDP (subsequently to become EDIDP2) covers the development aspects of procurement – cf EDRP which will cover research. Both are component parts of the future EDF, European Defence Fund.
At stake: There are multiple issues. For example, the scale of the funding may encourage the subsidised production of second rate materiel, since more effective or cheaper assets may be available on the world market. Or again, programme participants risk being mismatched, with assets designed for conflicting environments and missions from different trends in national deployments. Over time this incidentally may encourage modular designs as a side effect, which has advantages and drawbacks.
What they say: “The promotion of innovation and technological development in the Union defence industry” – Regulation (EU) 2018/1092 [note the singular]
Exposure: It remains uncertain what the UK’s association agreement will look like, along with liabilities and expectations.
Action: UK to avoid formal participation and to engage in joint development through OCCAR rather than the EDA, on the basis of nationally-set criteria and timeframes. This, incidentally, should be in parallel with a rethink of how HMG strategically plans and funds procurement.