SatCen and EDA strengthen cooperation on maritime surveillance

Source: European Union Satellite Centre (SatCen)

On March 14, the European Union Satellite Centre (SatCen) and the European Defence Agency (EDA) signed a bilateral agreement, taking the cooperation within MARSUR to a new level.


The MARSUR (Maritime Surveillance) project contributes to strengthening the EU’s maritime security awareness. This is a requirement highlighted by the EU Maritime Security Strategy (EUMSS), fully in line with the EU’s Strategic Compass, which emphasizes the need to enhance the EU’s ability to guarantee secure access to strategic domains and to protect European citizens, also by expanding a Coordinated Maritime Presence to new areas.

MARSUR is a maritime surveillance information exchange system launched by EDA with participating Member States in 2005. SatCen, the EU’s operational agency providing situational awareness through GEOINT services for CFSP/CSDP, has been actively involved in MARSUR since 2008, aligning its efforts with EDA and MARSUR participating Member States. The cooperation explores synergies with a special focus on the added value of satellite imagery analysis for improved Maritime Situational Awareness.


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On 31 May 2017, SatCen signed the Technical Arrangement for the MARSUR live phase, and on 4 May 2021, the Centre signed the MARSUR III Project Arrangement (PA) for 2021-2026 and the way ahead.

The new bilateral agreement between SatCen and EDA for implementing the MARSUR III Project Arrangement represents the third stage in the development of the network. The agreement will provide the operational basis for the exchange of relevant data between the Centre and the MARSUR community through a secure network.



SatCen is fully committed to the further evolution of this partnership and to establishing additional synergies with its other activities, such as the cooperation already established with Copernicus and the Centre’s participation in the Common Information Sharing Environment (CISE).

The SatCen Director, Ambassador Sorin Ducaru, remarked “I look forward to intensifying the excellent inter-agency collaboration by concluding this agreement, which will solidify the SatCen collaboration within MARSUR over the long term, and I would like to thank all actors involved, in particular the Member States as well as the teams of SatCen and EDA.”



“This bilateral agreement is a unique mechanism introduced under the MARSUR III project to involve SatCen in EDA ad hoc activities under the control and funding of the contributing Member States,” said EDA Chief Executive Jiří Šedivý. “I am pleased to sign it today on behalf of the MARSUR III contributing members,” he said.

During the signing ceremony, Commander Joachim Weidmann, Chairperson of the MARSUR Management Group, representing the participating nations stressed that “the bilateral agreement between EDA and SatCen is a milestone, and it is important that both organisations show the willingness to succeed in ensuring that relevant operational maritime information is shared in the required time.”



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