Lubomír Metnar

Lubomír Metnar
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Future Forces Forum project, which I hold under the patronage, is entering thirteenth year of existence and it is my pleasure to inform you that the Ministry of Defence has traditionally been one of the major co-organizers of this important event. It is a project that enables members of the armed and security forces and at the same time academics and professionals to familiarize themselves with the latest trends and trends in defence and security.
The importance of the Czech Ministry of Defence’s support to the FFF is twofold. The outputs of this project have, on one hand, the potential to ensure to our armed forces the conditions and means for effectively building the defence capabilities and for fulfilling international obligations in the field of defence and security within the appropriate political, legal, financial and military aspects. In the long run, the FFF project also brings valuable insights and establishes important partnerships that make the Ministry of Defence more efficient in securing the technological maturity of our armed forces.
The interest of the Czech Republic is to contribute as much as possible to the collective security system of the North Atlantic Alliance, the commitments declared in this matter represent one of the main priorities. Equally important for us is the current trend of strengthening the strategic autonomy of the European Union in the field of defence and increasing defence capabilities of individual member states, both materially and in terms of ability to conduct foreign operations.
The basic building blocks of our approach to security are consistency, systematicity and transparency. A successful security policy cannot be implemented at a time of immediate crisis - it is a long-term and continuous process that requires a thorough analysis of the security environment and comprehensive preparation for possible future crisis situations.
In many cases, this process will not reach the intended effect without international cooperation. Due to the ever-accelerating development of defence concepts and technologies, and also because of new, worse-than-expected threats such as hybrid warfare, ongoing and deepening cooperation in foreign, security and economic policy is far more critical to maintain the high pace than ever was. 
In addition to political and diplomatic instruments, national defence capabilities will undoubtedly remain one of the key factors in crisis management. Priority in ensuring defence and security will therefore continue to be the development of the state defence system and the armed forces with the maximum possible support of domestic defence industry, as well as the research and development capacities. 
One cannot forget the increased emphasis on building civil-military relations, notably through initiatives to raise citizens' awareness of the functioning of the Czech Republic's defence and on the possibilities of the civil sector contribution to its provision.
The Future Forces Forum, therefore, addresses not only the force components, but also the public administration, science and research community, academics and companies working on projects of public interest. The Czech Army's current state and objectives of development will be fully demonstrated to the domestic and foreign professional public.
I am convinced that the thirteenth year of the Future Forces Forum will bring all the participants with the maximum amount of new knowledge and valuable contacts. I believe that this year's varied program, following the outputs of the previous year and at the same time covering current trends and new areas, will once again shift defence-security cooperation in the Euro-Atlantic area forward.

Lubomír METNAR

Minister of Defence of the Czech Republic

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