The acting Minister of Defense, Margarita Robles, has inaugurated the first edition of the International Defense and Security Fair (FEINDEF), which takes place at the Madrid fairground, IFEMA.
This exhibition, which will last until next Friday the 31st, brings together the main companies of the defense and security industry, both Spanish and foreign, and aims to become the benchmark in Europe of this sector.
"It is very important to hold this type of fairs to know the industrial products that exist and consolidate a modern Armed Forces and to be an example in Europe and in the world," said Robles.
In turn, the minister stressed the importance of this exhibition to consolidate a culture of defense and "explain to the public that without a modern and committed Armed Forces we can not achieve a safer and more just world, which is the goal that has us to guide. "
Robles stressed the priority that the Government gives to the Armed Forces and affirmed that in the Ministry of Defense "we believe in a modern, effective Armed Forces, and that they are a point of reference in Europe, which they already are".
In this regard, he reiterated the interest of his Department in emphasizing that the Spanish Army is a leader, an example for other European countries. "We need to have an industry of
defense think and prioritize thinking in Spain. And if we think of Spain, we think of Europe and our Armed Forces, "he said.
Finally, the minister thanked the willingness of the business associations to organize the exhibition and the involvement of the Ministry of Defense, especially the Secretary of State, to carry out the project.
During the opening ceremony, Robles was accompanied by the Secretary of State for Defense, Ángel Olivares, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, Alejo de la Torre; and the Chief of Defense Staff, Fernando Alejandre, among other civil and military authorities.
Also present were the presidents of the business associations AESMIDE and TEDAE, Gerardo Sánchez Revenga and Jaime Rábago, respectively.
The security and defense industry had a turnover of 5,900 million euros in 2016, of which more than 80% comes from exports. The sector employs about 45,000 people throughout Spain.
The International Defense and Security Fair (FEINDEF), organized by the two business associations of the sector, TEDAE and AESMIDE, with the institutional support of the Ministry of Defense, is the first exhibition of these characteristics organized in Spain.
In addition to the official support of the Government of Spain, it has had the backing of the European Commission, which reinforces the international dimension of this event.
The event will be attended by European institutions related to Defense and 40 official delegations from 27 countries, which demonstrates the many opportunities for international collaboration offered by the new European defense policy framework.
The event has an extensive program of forums and conferences, which will discuss current issues in defense.
The Employment, Innovation and Women's Forums in addition to commemorating the thirty years of missions abroad; they are the central axis of the program, which is completed with several round tables in which experts will discuss the perspectives of the sector.