Strasbourg, 1 June 2023 (TDI): European Members of Parliament have given their endorsement to a plan aimed at bolstering the supply of ammunition to Ukraine. The Act in Support of Ammunition Production (ASAP), which received backing from the European Parliament on Thursday, seeks to expedite the delivery of ammunition and missiles to Ukraine while also assisting member states in replenishing their own stockpiles.

Under ASAP, targeted measures will be introduced, including €500 million in financing, to increase the European Union’s production capacity. The focus will be on addressing the current scarcity of defence products, specifically ground-to-ground and artillery ammunition, missiles, and their components.

To ensure a timely and continuous supply of these defence products within the EU, the European Commission will identify, map, and monitor their availability, as well as the availability of corresponding raw materials. The proposed mechanisms, principles, and temporary rules aim to secure the necessary defence products for buyers within the EU.

The regulation’s effectiveness will be evaluated by mid-2024, considering the evolving security landscape. Based on the assessment, the extension of these measures and the allocation of additional funds may be considered.

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The legislation, known as ASAP, was introduced by the European Commission on May 3, 2023. In the same month, MEPs agreed to initiate an urgent procedure process in order to expedite the bill’s approval.

Cristian Bușoi, the leader of the EP’s negotiating team, hailed the decision as a significant step towards enhancing the security and defense of the European Union. Bușoi emphasized the importance of supporting Ukraine in the face of ongoing Russian aggression and expressed hope for a swift agreement with the Council.

The legislation was adopted by the European Parliament with a resounding majority, receiving 446 votes in favor, 67 against, and 112 abstentions. The next step involves negotiations with the Council, with the aim of reaching a political agreement. Once an agreement is reached, MEPs will vote on it in plenary in July.

Simultaneously, MEPs are also working on the European Defence Industrial Reinforcement through the common Procurement Act (EDIRPA), which aims to facilitate collaboration among member states in the defence procurement phase to address urgent and critical gaps.