A bustling exhibition closed off NEDS2022 in Rotterdam Ahoy on Thursday 17 November. No fewer than 3,500 visitors, 170 exhibitors and 20 foreign delegations contributed to the most successful NEDS yet.
Preprogramme: visits and matchmaking
The delegations and a number of exhibitors visited three locations of the Dutch armed forces on November 15th for further introductions. We are very grateful to the Royal Dutch Army, Air Force and Navy for their cooperations. Some delegations also visited a number of Dutch authorities on 18 November.
With expert support from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, a matchmaking event was organized in Ahoy on 16 November. 180 representatives of companies from European countries were able to meet to discussing collaborations, mainly within the European Defence Fund. An informal meeting on Wednesday evening for the foreign delegations and exhibitors was enriched with two speakers: former F35 pilot, ret. lt. col. Ian Knight of Ilias Solutions briefly discussed his experiences. Former Secretary General of NATO Jaap de Hoop Scheffer shared his insights about the current geopolitical situation.
Maritime cooperation and industrial momentum
Discussions on the formation of the Northern Naval Shipbuilding Cooperation progressed, to which the Defense and Security Associations of Denmark, Germany, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden pledged their support. In the coming period, together with the Ministries of Defense of these countries, we will examine which maritime projects can be carried out jointly.
ICYMI: the plenary programme
The early morning of November 17th saw the arrivel of the first interested parties for the opening of the NEDS2022 by the director of the Defence Materiel Organisation, Vice Admiral Arie Jan de Waard. At the start of the symposium, NIDV chairman Hans Hillen also drew attention to the victims of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. State Secretary for Defence Christophe van der Maat discussed the high purchasing power of the Ministry of Defence, the importance of the rapid fulfillment of Defence needs, the high-tech Dutch defence sector and the cooperation within the Golden Triangle for Defence and Security. He expressed concern about the geopolitical situation. His contribution was greatly appreciated, partly because the discussion on the 16th and 17th of the Defence budget with a substantially higher budget also demanded his attention.
Professor Jonathan Holslag had a stimulating message about how the Netherlands, among others, is dealing with the current security crisis. This provided an excellent prelude to the panel in which, in addition to Holslag, VADM Boudewijn Boots (PCDS) and Gerben Edelijn also participated, excellently led by Esmeralda Kleinreesink.
The afternoon saw various side sessions on materiel priorities: sustainable projects and processes, modern border security, and wider security reviews after COVID-19.
De Scriptieprijs gaat naar…
The winner of the Jan Gmelich Meijling thesis prize is Second lieutenant Damy Silver (Royal Netherlands Navy) for his thesis ‘Landing performance of autonomous helicopter drones’. Jury chairperson Commodore Saskia Siemensma awarded the candidate with a €2.500,- prize and a shared Navy Day with the runners-up.
Het belang van de beurs
The visitors of the exhibition were able to see with their own eyes that the Dutch defense and security industry is innovative, competitive and of high quality. Visitors came from all continents. Members of the House of Representatives and European Parliament, ambassadors, including those of the United States, defence attachés, the top of the armed forces and police and of foreign armed forces, directors of sister organizations of the NIDV in Europe accepted the invitation, but also the warfighters and other practitioners who need to use the products. Representatives of NATO, the European Defence Agency and the Directorate General for Defence Industry and Space of the Europan Commission put their lights on in Ahoy. Press from the Netherlands and abroad informed themselves about the qualities of the Dutch Golden Triangle for Defence and Security during the exhibition.
With the annual NEDS, the NIDV offers representatives of governments, international organisations, knowledge institutions and companies from the Netherlands and abroad the opportunity to meet each other in the interest of peace and security.
Special thanks for the realization of the successful NEDS2022 go to main sponsor Thales Nederland, the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate, in particular the Military Production Commissariat.
Without industry there is no security!
NEDS2023 is booked for November 30, 2023.