Nusrat GHANI (United Kingdom)
14 October 2021
This report was adopted by the Science and Technology Committee at the Annual Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Lisbon.
NATO has continuously fostered its cooperation with countries that lie outside the geographical scope of the Alliance. Through a series of programmes and initiatives, NATO engages multi- and bilaterally with partner nations that share the Alliance’s values and interests. Cooperation in the area of Science and Technology (S&T) is part and parcel of that engagement. In recognition of the changing regional security environment in the Asia-Pacific, which is driven by both the rise of China and the increasing strategic role of Emerging and Disruptive Technologies (EDT), the Alliance is actively focused on deepening ties with its partner nations in Asia-Pacific.
While S&T cooperation forms an important part of NATO’s partnership system in general, your rapporteur concludes that the Science and Technology dimension of cooperation with NATO’s Asian partners in particular is an underexplored pillar of this mutually beneficial relationship. Japan and ROK are world leaders in, inter alia, several technology areas and are science and technology powerhouses more broadly. This report identifies the comparative S&T advantages these NATO partners enjoy in key dual-use technologies and suggests that cooperation can be improved in a variety of ways. Your rapporteur recognises that deepening and expanding cooperation in the S&T realm will depend on the degree to which partner nations make use of NATO’s vast network of scientific and technological expertise. To that end, your rapporteur welcomes the recent decision of the NATO Science and Technology Board to include Japan as an STO Enhanced Opportunities Partner (EOP) nation and suggests that the STB might consider inviting other Asian partners to become STO-EOP nations, if they so desire.