The European Defence Agency (EDA) was established under a joint action of the Council of Ministers on the 12th July, 2004 and constitutes one of the Services of Common Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) based in Brussels. All the member states of the European Union, apart from Denmark, participate in the Agency. Cyprus became a full member of EDA by decision of the Ministerial Council taken on June 25th 2004.


The mission of the Agency is to support the Council and the Member States in their effort to improve the EU´s defence capabilities in the field of crisis management and to sustain the ESDP as it stands now and develops in the future. It also aims at the promotion and aid of European collaboration in the fields of military equipment, while it also aims at aiding the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base, at creating a competitive European market of defence equipment, as well as at promoting research.


The Agency operates under the monitoring and the political control of the Council. The Council publishes annual guidelines with regards to the activities of the Agency, mainly regarding its program of work and approves its financial framework every three years. The Agency submits regularly a report to the Council regarding its activities.


The bodies of the Agency include the Head of the Agency, the Steering Board and the Chief Executive of the Organisation.

The Head of the Agency is the Secretary General/High Representative of ESDP. He is responsible for the general organisation and operation of the Agency. He also ensures that the guidelines issued by the Council and the decisions of the Steering Board are applied by the Chief Executive of the Organisation.


The Steering Board is the decision-making body of the Agency. It is composed of representatives from each participating member state and of a representative of the Committee. Meets at least twice annually, at the level of Ministers of Defence or their representatives and some additional times each year for the subjects of Armaments, Research and Technology and Military Capabilities. The Head of the Agency convenes and chairs the meetings of the Steering Board at ministerial level.

The CEO is appointed by the Steering Board based on a proposal of the Head of the Agency for a period of three years, with the possibility of biennial extension. The CEO directs the personnel of the Agency and is responsible for the monitoring and the co-ordination of functional teams.


The budgetary provisions applied in the general budget of the Agency are established by the Council with unanimity. The income of the agency is constituted mainly by the contributions of participating member states. Their contributions are calculated based on the gross national income that is fixed in article 28 paragraph 3 of the treaty of EU and according to the decision 2000/597/EC, Council, of 29th September 2000.


Decision 2000/597/EC