Radek Vondráček

Radek Vondráček

Dear ladies and gentlemen,

I am very honored that for this year's prestigious Future Forces Forum exhibition and expert platform, the organizers approached me to provide the auspices for this event on behalf of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic, along with other top representatives of departments and institutions.

In the Chamber of Deputies, not just within its Defense Committee, we are fully aware of the importance and meaning of building defense of our country - more than ever before in the current uncertain times. The basic task of our army is to protect our own territory, the state, the citizens and the sovereignty of the republic.

Fulfilling this mission is greatly supported by our membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the longest actually functioning modern collective defense organization, thanks to which we are able to gain invaluable experience while contributing to building a safer world. However, like everything else, our membership in this prestigious club has its cost. The cost is
the investment in the modernization of our defense capabilities, in increasing interoperability, as well as in the deployment of units to foreign operations and early response combat groups.

It has been true since time immemorial that cooperation can achieve much better results and often save valuable energy and resources. And these results can very often be used in many other industries. The so-called dual-use technology, while being developed primarily for defense purposes, can be very effectively used also in civilian areas, currently for example in our struggle with the ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.

The Future Forces Forum is a platform that is one of the few opportunities to concentrate in our country such volume of knowledge and expert capacities in fields such as military health care, electronic warfare and reconnaissance or protection against weapons of mass destruction, and thus respond to the latest, as well as potential future risks through the discussion of the most topical issues.

The Army of the Czech Republic has long enjoyed significant public trust. As a representative
of the lower house of the Parliament, representing thus the voice of the people, this trust really pleases me and I firmly believe that the trust of our citizens in the armed forces will continue to grow. I also wish, that the Czech defense industry, which has been somewhat pushed to the background up to recently, enjoys similar development and trust level, as it has a long tradition as well as high-tech experts, but so far has succeeded mainly abroad. In my view, we need to further strengthen the communication between the security and defense departments and domestic producers of defense technologies. At the same time, I will advocate for the appropriate set-up
of legislation, which will - in line with EU rules - foster support of not only the domestic defense industry but also research and development centers.

I wish the Future Forces Forum to fulfill its basic mission. It is clear to me that in the current situation, with the various restrictions applied to restrict the coronavirus spread, this is not entirely easy for the organizers or participants.

Radek VONDRÁČEK

President of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic

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