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December 1, 2021

National Defence Ministry presents 2016 activity report. DefMin Les: Romania – up to task of facing complex evolutions in regional security environment

Romania is ready to face the complex evolutions in the security environment that manifest themselves in the region, being its duty to have an efficient military system adapted to the regional context, declared on Tuesday the Minister of National Defence, Gabriel Les, during the MApN 2016 activity report sitting.

The event was attended by President Klaus Iohannis, Premier Sorin Grindeanu and Lower Chamber Speaker Liviu Dragnea.

Defence Minister Les specified that the institution’s budget, representing 2 percent of GDP, provides for the military system modernization path.

“It is our duty to have an efficient military system, adapted to the regional security context. This new defence architecture involves a highly trained human force, adequate work conditions and modern facilities, allowing our troops to meet their missions at the standards expected by society,” said Les.

According to him, in the current international context, the MoD’s main concern was the increase of the army’s operational capacity, which depended largely on the budget it had at its disposal.

Recruitment affected by demographic situation and competition with civilian sector

Defence Minister Gabriel Les added that the recruitment of professionals in the armed forces is primarily affected by the deterioration of the demographic situation, by the changes in the young people’s skills-and-motivations profile and by the competition imposed by the civilian sector.

“Attracting and recruiting valuable human resource represents a strategic domain with strong impact on both the capacity to respond to the new challenges of the security environment as well as to prepare the population and the territory for defence. (…) Despite being at the start, the use of the virtual space as a medium of promoting the military profession shows the premises of a successful approach, which justify its continued development,” Minister Les stated at MoD’s 2016 activity review meeting.

He pointed out that advancement in the military career, in a planned manner and based on the professional performance criterion, remains one of MoD’s fundamental goals.

Gabriel Les added that the hiking of the armed forces’ operational capacity will remain an important objective in 2017, seeking to continue the process of developing, adapting and transforming the armed forces’ capabilities.

“Likewise, we will seek the implementation of an optimal management of defence resources in order to optimise the ratio between active duty combat units and active duty command or logistics structures, and to ensure a correct balance between active duty military and civilian personnel, as well as one between active duty combat personnel, supply chain personnel and command personnel. At the same time, we want, starting in 2017, to ensure a balanced proportion between expenditures on equipment and those on goods and services for personnel, so that a correct balance, in line with NATO models, would be reached,” Gabriel Les stated.


President Iohannis: Defence budget sets prerequisites in place for ambitious goals to be achieved in 2017


President Klaus Iohannis said on Tuesday that the allocation this year of 2 percent of GDP to the budget of the Ministry of Defence sets the prerequisites in place for the fulfilment of the goals Romania has committed to.

“Ensuring 2 percent of GDP in financing this year, in line with the political commitment taken in January 2015, sets the conditions in place for the accomplishment of all the goals committed to. Organizational measures and responsible and timely managerial measures are however necessary. The responsibilities incumbent on Romania following the decisions taken at the [NATO] Warsaw Summit must be the result of joint and comprehensive efforts on the part of the institutions with security and defence responsibilities, to the benefit of Romania and all Romanians, therefore inter-institutional cooperation in general and the co-operation of the Defence Ministry and the Foreign Affairs Ministry in particular, are essential,” the head of the state told the meeting reviewing the National Defence Ministry’s activity in 2016.

Iohannis stressed that Romania has a solid conceptual and regulatory framework based on the Country’s National Defence Strategy for 2015 – 2019, on the Plan for the Strategy’s implementation, the Defence Planning Law, the Defence White Paper, the Military Strategy, the Plan to implement the decisions of the NATO Summit in Warsaw.

“The defence budget for this year sets the prerequisites in place for the accomplishment of the ambitious goals you committed to for 2017,” said Iohannis.

He underscored that military and civilian personnel are the most precious resource of the Romanian Armed Forces.

“The women and men who devote their life to serving their fatherland under the tricolour flag are a truly elite corps not only because of the high moral and professional standards they assume, but also because of the many sacrifices they make. Both in the country and in the theatres of operations, you are always there where Romania requires you to be, working with patriotism, loyalty and modesty under the motto ‘Honour and Fatherland’,” added the head of state.

The President also emphasised the current international context characterised by challenges to global and regional security which are “unprecedented” since the end of the Cold War. He mentioned the prolongation of the conflict in Ukraine, “without a viable political solution in sight,” the delays in finding a reasonable and negotiated way of putting an end to the war in Syria, “the virulence of anti-Western Islamic terrorism” practiced by Daesh and “the crisis generated by the massive influx of refugees seeking asylum in Europe.”

Iohannis said that the consolidation of cooperation within NATO and the EU is needed, appreciating the recent decisions taken by the Union and by the Alliance at the latest summit, such as the consolidation of presence at the Black Sea.

The President praised the MoD for the efforts made in these directions, as well as for continuing to transform the armed forces, operationalise the allied structures on our country’s territory and hike the living standards of armed forces personnel.

Iohannis also emphasised that the MoD must continue its efforts to implement the NATO decisions that concern Romania’s territory, through the structures rendered operational in the country.


PM Grindeanu at Defence Ministry’s stocktaking meeting: Gov’t seriously supports strengthening of national defence capacity


The government “seriously” supports the goals regarding the strengthening of the national defence capacity, Premier Sorin Grindeanu said on Tuesday, highlighting the importance of the National Defence Ministry’s directing its efforts to promoting national strategic interests within NATO and the EU, but also to ensuring regional stability.

“We seriously support the goals aimed at strengthening the national defence capacity, the transformation, modernization and adequate equipping of Romania’s Armed Forces, developing capabilities to efficiently counter asymmetric and hybrid threats, intensifying the security dimension of the strategic partnership and the strategic partnership with the US respectively, by strengthening military cooperation, including on the national territory and in the Black Sea region, increasing interoperability with allied and NATO partner forces and intensifying participation in missions and operations in the areas of strategic interest for Romania,” Grindeanu told the meeting reviewing the National Defence Ministry’s activity in 2016.

He mentioned that the international security environment is tense, beset with “a worrying combination of risks and increasingly complex threats.”

“I hereby reassert the government’s firm commitment to achieving the defence policy goals and ensuring the successful modernization and consolidation of Romania’s Armed Forces. (…) We understood right from the beginning that our seriousness and credibility must rely on adequate resources,” said the Prime Minister.

He added that he is confident the defence budget will provide a “solid ground” for the fast-paced modernization of the Army.

“It is very important that your efforts are directed towards promoting the national strategic interest within NATO and the EU, as well as to ensuring regional stability, in the eastern neighbourhood, and towards the implementation of the EU global strategy in the area of security and defence,” said Sorin Grindeanu.

The Premier also expressed gratitude for the troops’ professionalism and the “exemplary manner” whereby they are doing their duty in various theatres of operations as well as in the country.

Grindeanu also spoke about Romania’s “extraordinary military resource” and expressed his firm belief that this year’s priorities must also include an increase in the personnel’s living standards and pay.


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