A Strategic Compass for Security and Defence – For a European Union that protects its citizens, values and interests and contributes to international peace and security

Author (Corporate)
Series Details 7371/22
Publication Date 21/03/2022
Content Type , ,


The Council of the European Union adopted on 21 March 2022 the so-called Strategic Compass, a document comprising a common vision for the European Union's role in security and defence.

Further information:

The Strategic Compass is an action plan for strengthening the EU's defence and security policy by 2030. It was designed to make the European Union a stronger and more capable security provider, so that it is able to protect its citizens and contribute to international peace and security. This document provides an analysis of the EU's strategic environment and seeks to bring greater coherence and a common sense of purpose to the EU's security and defence efforts. It is a guide for action, providing concrete proposals and timelines for the coming years in four main areas:

  • Act more quickly and decisively when facing crises;
  • Secure citizens against fast-changing threats;
  • Invest in capabilities and technologies as needed;
  • Partner with others to achieve common goals.

The Compass is the result of two years of discussions between the EU Member States. It was eventually adopted by the Council of the European Union at a meeting on 21 March 2022, and formally endorsed by the European Council at a summit on 25 March.

Source Link https://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-7371-2022-INIT/en/pdf
Related Links
Commentary and Analysis
International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS): Commentary, 10/03/2022: The EU’s Strategic Compass: A Guide to Reverse Strategic Shrinkage? https://icds.ee/en/the-eus-strategic-compass-a-guide-to-reverse-strategic-shrinkage/
European Council on Foreign Affairs (ECFR): Commentary, 11/03/2022: Grand illusions: Partnerships in the EU’s Strategic Compass https://ecfr.eu/article/grand-illusions-partnerships-in-the-eus-strategic-compass/
ASD Europe, 21/03/2022: ASD Welcomes EU Strategic Compass for Security and Defence https://www.asd-europe.org/asd-welcomes-eu-strategic-compass-for-security-and-defence
Euronews, 23/03/2022: What is the 'strategic compass' and what does it mean for EU defence? https://www.euronews.com/my-europe/2022/03/23/what-is-the-strategic-compass-and-what-does-it-mean-for-eu-defence
Centre for European Reform (CER): Insights, 25/03/2022: Does the Strategic Compass Herald a Stronger EU in Security and Defence? https://www.cer.eu/insights/does-strategic-compass-herald-stronger-eu-security-and-defence
European Council on Foreign Affairs (ECFR): Commentary, 31/03/2022: The EU’s Strategic Compass: Brand new, already obsolete https://ecfr.eu/article/the-eus-strategic-compass-brand-new-already-obsolete/
Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS): Policy Insights, 31/03/2022: The EU’s Strategic Compass. A guide to reverse strategic shrinkage? https://www.ceps.eu/ceps-publications/the-eus-strategic-compass/
Atlantic Council: Event, 04/04/2022: Orienting European security: The EU Strategic Compass and EU-US defense cooperation https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/event/orienting-european-security/
European Policy Centre (EPC): Round-Up, 05/04/2022: Will the Strategic Compass be a game-changer for EU security and defence? https://www.epc.eu/en/publications/Will-the-Strategic-Compass-be-a-game-changer-for-EU-security-and-defen~479820
EurActiv: Opinion, 06/04/2022: Benelux’ view on the implementation of the Strategic Compass https://www.euractiv.com/section/defence-and-security/opinion/benelux-view-on-the-implementation-of-the-strategic-compass/
Clingendael: Event Report, 13/04/2022: The Implementation of the EU Strategic Compass (6 April 2022) https://www.clingendael.org/publication/international-conference-eu-strategic-compass

EurActiv, 06/03/2022: Russia’s war on Ukraine rewrites EU’s upcoming military strategy https://www.euractiv.com/section/defence-and-security/news/leak-russias-war-on-ukraine-rewrites-eus-upcoming-military-strategy/
Politico, 18/03/2022: EU toughens language on Russia in its defense plan https://www.politico.eu/article/european-union-russia-strategic-compass-defense-military-ukraine-war/
Deutsche Welle, 21/03/2022: EU approves security policy for rapid reaction force https://p.dw.com/p/48o73
YLE News, 21/03/2022: Haavisto: Foreign, defence ministers agree on EU's "strategic compass" https://yle.fi/news/3-12369599
N1 Info, 21/03/2022: EU Strategic Compass warns of frail stability of Western Balkans https://rs.n1info.com/english/news/eu-strategic-compass-warns-of-frail-stability-of-western-balkans/
Reuters, 21/03/2022: EU to establish rapid reaction force with up to 5,000 troops https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/germany-offers-provide-core-eu-quick-reaction-force-2025-2022-03-21/
RTÉ News, 21/03/2022: Irish troops could take part in new EU rapid reaction force - Coveney https://www.rte.ie/news/world/2022/0321/1287491-brussels-meeting/
Kathimerini, 22/03/2022: Greece satisfied with final text of EU Strategic Compass, say sources https://www.ekathimerini.com/news/1180363/greece-satisfied-with-final-text-of-eu-strategic-compass-say-sources/
EurActiv, 22/03/2022: Ukraine war shapes EU’s military strategy as complementary to NATO https://www.euractiv.com/section/all/news/ukraine-war-shapes-eus-military-strategy-as-complementary-to-nato/
Deutsche Welle, 23/03/2022: EU to beef up defense capabilities with 'Strategic Compass' https://p.dw.com/p/48tQI
Politico, 25/03/2022: EU leaders approve updated military plan https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-leader-approve-defense-military-plan/
The Irish Times, 28/03/2022: EU defence: ‘Strategic Compass’ permits action without Nato’s help https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/eu-defence-strategic-compass-permits-action-without-nato-s-help-1.4837409

EU EEAS: A Strategic Compass for the EU https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/106337/
EU EEAS: Factsheet, March 2022: A Strategic Compass for the EU https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/default/files/2022-03-21_strategic_compass.pdf
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 21/03/2022: A Strategic Compass for a stronger EU security and defence in the next decade https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/03/21/a-strategic-compass-for-a-stronger-eu-security-and-defence-in-the-next-decade/
EU EEAS: Questions & Answers: Strategic Compass (21 March 2022) https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/97895/
Finnish Government: Press Release, 21/03/2022: EU defence ministers to discuss Strategic Compass https://valtioneuvosto.fi/en/-/eu-defence-ministers-to-discuss-strategic-compass
Swedish Government: Article, 22/03/2022: Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and EU Strategic Compass discussed at EU defence ministerial meeting https://www.government.se/articles/2022/03/russias-aggression-against-ukraine-and-eu-strategic-compass-discussed-at-eu-defence-ministerial-meeting/
S&D EP Group: Newsroom, 24/03/2022: S&Ds welcome the Strategic Compass as a big step towards a genuine Defence Union https://www.socialistsanddemocrats.eu/de/newsroom/sds-welcome-strategic-compass-big-step-towards-genuine-defence-union
EU EEAS: Blog, 25/03/2022: The Strategic Compass is out: now we have to implement it (by Josep Borrell) https://www.eeas.europa.eu/eeas/strategic-compass-out-now-we-have-implement-it_en

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