Oleksandr Turchynov: Only a stable, powerful, independent Ukraine can become a reliable security factor for the entire European continent
Only a stable, powerful, independent Ukraine can become a reliable security factor for the entire European continent. This was stated by Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov in his speech at the 12th Kiev Security Forum.
The NSDC Secretary elaborated on the challenges facing the world as a whole, Europe, and Ukraine in particular, pointing out that Russia's hybrid war against our state will be further waged in all directions. In this context, he emphasized the priority tasks for Ukraine to successfully counter the aggressor.
Mr. Turchynov stressed the importance of building up domestic economic potential: "The major security factor is the rapid, dynamic development of the economy. Without a powerful economy, we will not be able to provide effective protection of our country".
The NSDC noted that the defense budget has increased significantly in recent years - in particular, this year's level of financing of the state defense order amounts to 21,3 billion hryvnias, which is 20 times more than in 2013 (1,09 billion hryvnias), and the level of financing of the security and defense sector of Ukraine this year will amount to 5.37% of GDP (in 2013 - less than 1%).
Mr. Turchynov emphasized the importance of further reforming the defense sector, the defense-industrial complex, in particular, with regard to the transition to NATO standards, the transparency of defense orders. "The decision was made to liberalize foreign economic activity of the subjects of the defense-industrial complex, conditions were established to allow customers to purchase defense products and weapons without state intermediaries", - he reminded. - Many items in the state defense order will be opened, except for those that constitute state secrets, conditions for transparency and competition are established".
According to Mr. Turchynov, the domestic defense industry satisfies all the basic needs of the Armed Forces and security structures. At the same time, the NSDC Secretary stated, our country needs effective military-technical cooperation for the creation of modern new-generation weapons and addressed the representatives of partner countries urging them to actively participate in this process.
"The issue of Europe's unity in countering Russian aggression is a matter of security of not only Ukraine. This is a security issue for all European countries, - he underscored. - This is the issue of the future of Europe". "Only the unity of Europe and such an important security factor as a strong Ukrainian army, our country's strong security and defense sector today are the most important factors of protecting peace and security in Europe", - Oleksandr Turchynov said adding that Ukraine has no alternative to European and Euro-Atlantic integration.