Last Updated: 01/31/2014*

As countries on both sides of the Atlantic combat security threats amid tighter budget constraints, experts are gathering to address the future state of defense head-on at a global conference in Munich, Germany.

Dozens of current and former heads of state, defense ministers, CEOs, and high-ranking members of the armed forces are attending the 50th Munich Security Conference, which is sponsored by Raytheon.

"The threats to global security aren't going away. Indeed, they're evolving, growing more sophisticated by the day," said John Harris, CEO of Raytheon’s international division. "The United States and our allies must strengthen our cooperation to develop the next generation of security tools to meet these threats."

With more than 3,000 employees and 500 suppliers across Europe, Raytheon’s rich history with international partners offers powerful examples of transatlantic cooperation.

With more than 200 fire units fielded worldwide, Patriot is the system of choice for 12 nations around the globe.

Harris participated in a panel discussion titled "The Future of European Defense" on the opening day of the Jan. 31-Feb. 2 conference.

Founded in 1963 by publisher Ewald von Kleist, the annual conference is a unique opportunity for global leaders to gather and discuss these and other pressing international security concerns.

In 2009, event officials inaugurated the Ewald von Kleist Award, honoring prominent figures who have made exceptional contributions to world peace. Previous winners include retired Connecticut senator Joseph Lieberman, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and former National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft.

ESSM is an international cooperative upgrade of the RIM-7 SeaSparrow Missile providing unparalleled self-defense against high-speed, maneuvering anti-ship missiles.

"The Munich Security Conference is a dynamic dialogue with some of the best minds in global security and recognizes the importance of government and industry collaboration," Harris said.

The conference comes as governments confront intense pressure to shave their budgets and pay down debt.

To adapt to these fiscal times, Europe and the United States need to focus on preserving and expanding cross-border collaboration, Harris said. In particular, the global defense industry needs to partner more to offer the best technical solutions, he said.

By regularly collaborating, governments can avoid unnecessary or duplicative spending, Harris said. They can share the expense load and quicken the development process. And they can ensure that the technologies that do get financed address a genuine security need.

RIM-7 SeaSparrow Missile
Produced in partnership by Raytheon and RAMSYS of Germany, RAM is aboard more than 100 ships as an integral self-defense weapon for the navies of Egypt, Germany, Greece, Republic of Korea, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

"Such teamwork is essential to overcoming the world's most pressing defense challenges," Harris said.

The Munich Security Conference is chaired by Wolfgang Ischinger, the global head of government relations at Allianz SE, an international financial services provider headquartered in Munich. Mr. Ischinger has served as Germany's ambassador to the United States and the United Kingdom.




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