"Arms manufacturers will have exceptional conditions": A defense forum with the participation of companies from dozens of countries held in Kyiv. All details
On September 29, Kyiv hosted the Defense Industries Forum, attended by more than 250 companies from 30 countries. The event was aimed at uniting the international community to create a new and powerful arsenal of weapons for Ukraine. President Volodymyr Zelensky also announced the start of the actual development and restoration of the Ukrainian military-industrial complex.
For this purpose, the Defense Industries Alliance was created, which invites foreign companies to cooperate. The initiative belongs to our country, which has been fighting a full-scale Russian invasion for 20 months. Read more about the defense forum in the capital in OBOZREVATEL's article (to see photos and videos, scroll down to the end).
Defense Industries Alliance
The creation of the Defense Industries Alliance was announced at the forum, which "values international law and can work to protect any nation in the world from any aggression." This event was announced by the Ukrainian leader at the opening of the event. All the world's arms and military equipment manufacturers are invited to sign the Declaration of Cooperation with the Alliance.
"Today, this declaration has already been signed by 13 prominent foreign companies that are ready to build a new arsenal of the free world together with Ukraine," Zelensky said.
Special economic treatment and defense fund for arms manufacturers
The president also announced a special economic regime for the military-industrial complex in Ukraine, with exceptional conditions for arms manufacturers. In addition, a special defense fund will be established for them.
"It will provide additional resources for the development of military production and support for cooperation to create new military facilities, as well as programs necessary for defense and care for our soldiers," Zelensky explained.
In addition to a range of public spending on defense, defense production, and private investment, the special fund will be replenished by dividends from state defense assets and confiscated Russian assets.
"It will be 600 days of the full-scale war soon. No matter what happens, there has not been a day when Ukraine would feel hopeless, and Russia would have at least a little real hope of breaking us... Today, everything that serves us can serve the world. We are forming a new arsenal of peace," Zelensky said.
Development of Ukraine's military-industrial complex
The President expressed his belief that Ukraine will be able to build a long-term reliable peace through the development of the military-industrial complex on its own and in cooperation with global arms manufacturers. The country is ready to share real combat practices with partners so that the world cannot be threatened by any aggressor in the future.
"With its criminal and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine, Russia has shown every nation that it can threaten the sovereignty and normal life of any nation on the planet. By our defense in this war, by our movement to liberate our own territory, every state understands what it needs for its defense, including weapons, production facilities, modern technologies, and alliances," the Ukrainian leader explained.
Among other things, the guarantor said that it was during his trip to the United States that he agreed to cooperate with American arms manufacturers. They will help Kyiv develop the Ukrainian defense industry.
Who attended the Forum
On Thursday, September 28, French Defense Minister Sébastien Lecornu arrived in Kyiv. According to media reports, he was accompanied by "about 20 representatives of the defense industry." An official from the manufacturer of the Caesar air defense system was among them, which is already in service with the Ukrainian Armed Forces.
The President of Ukraine also met with Grant Shapps, the British Secretary of State for Defense. Before the event in Kyiv, they discussed strengthening Ukraine's air defense, which is especially important ahead of the winter season.
On the day of the event, the president said that more than 30 countries were represented, with a total of 252 defense companies producing a full range of weapons and defense systems and solutions.
"The main thing in this hall is the confidence of the free world that we can protect our people, values and freedom. We will do this without fail because we will build a modern and powerful arsenal that will leave no chance for any aggressor," Zelensky said.
He added that the forum was also attended by representatives of domestic industries both public and private, new and known ones. They become more powerful in times of war.
What else is known about the Defense Industry Forum
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky shared details about the upcoming event in a video address on September 25.
"There are already more than 160 companies that will participate. 26 countries. Different parts of the world: America, Asia, Europe, and Australia. Manufacturers of a full range of weapons. We will do everything to unite the world to create a new and powerful arsenal for Ukraine and all defenders of international law," the President said.
For his part, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that this is an initiative of Ukraine, which understands that it needs to think strategically and cannot ensure the sustainability of arms supplies during the war only through warehouses.
"We need to ensure this by increasing production, primarily in Ukraine. We are working together with the Minister for Strategic Industries Oleksandr Kamyshyn and Defense Minister Rustem Umerov to maximize synergy and results," he said in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine before the forum.
According to him, the idea for the event was born in the Foreign Ministry in the spring of 2023, after which, on behalf of the president, the Foreign Ministry, the Ministry of Strategy and Industry, and the Ministry of Defense worked as a team to organize it. He added that "this is an example of real teamwork between the three ministries in the interests of the state's defense."
The event brought together representatives not only from European companies but also from other parts of the world. The main focus was on arms manufacturers and the signing of contracts and alliances. The Ministry of Strategic Industries and the Ministry of Defense played a key role in this. For its part, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs worked with each country to ensure that they delegated the maximum number of campaigns to participate in.
"We are creating a 'political umbrella' for the forum so that companies can see that what they plan to do together with Ukraine enjoys the political support of their governments, as well as the EU and NATO," Kuleba summarized.
As reported by OBOZREVATEL, President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke about the prospects for arms production in Ukraine. According to him, to ensure the country's security, it needs air defense systems and other modern weapons.