Seminar on the innovations in the Bulgarian defense industry and the modernization of the Bulgarian Army was held at the UNWE

On 14 May 2024 at the University of National and World Economy (UNWE) was held the thematic seminar "Innovations in the Bulgarian defense industry and the modernization of the Bulgarian Army". The event was organized by the Department of National and Regional Security (UNWE) within the framework of the National Scientific Program "Security and Defense" (NSP SD), and under the patronage of the Minister of Defence Lieutenant General Atanas Zapryanov (Ret.) and the Minister of Economy and Industry Dr. Petko Nikolov.

Prof. Dr. Dimitar Dimitrov, Rector of the UNWE, opened the event and emphasized that the NSP SD is the only one programme that for the first time in Bulgaria bring together those universities that operate in the defence and security field. He highlighted that a cooperation between them, the state authorities and businesses for the needs of the modernization of the Bulgarian Army and the innovations in the Bulgarian defense industry will bring the necessary synergy and create opportunities for the development of strong and sustainable defence industrial capabilities and capacity.

According to the Minister of Defense Lieutenant General (ret.) Atanas Zapryanov, "It is necessary that the defence policy and the policy in the field of industry be adapted to accelerate the integration of our arms production with that of Europe", emphasizing also the importance of the recently adopted "2032 Defence Investment Programme".

The minister of economy and industry Dr. Petko Nikolov noted that "In order to accelerate the pace of innovation in the defence sector, closer interaction between civil, military, research and innovation communities is needed”. He further argued that ensuring the competitiveness and sustainability of defence sector, a new approach to innovation is needed, in particular when it comes to the so-called "revolutionary technologies", since the role of the latter is becoming increasingly important in a number of fields such as AI, big data, quantum technologies, robotics, autonomous systems, supersonic weapon systems and biotechnology.

The thematic seminar was also attended by the Deputy Minister of Economy and Industry, Dr. David Sukalinski, who presented a report on "European programs and initiatives in support of the defense industry", as well as by Col. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Borislav Genov, Director of the Defense Institute "Prof. Tsvetan Lazarov", Eng. Petar Georgiev - co-chairman of the "Association of the Bulgarian Defense Industry - Acad. Stefan Vodenicharov" and executive director of "Samel-90" JSC.

The forum also attracted the attention of Bulgarian and foreign defence companies. Presentations on various themes were made by vice admiral (retired) Plamen Manushev from MTG-Dolphin plc., the executive director of "Terem-Holding" EAD Kalin Dimitrov, the regional sales director of Kongsberg Stein Engen and Alexander Penley from KNDS France.

More information about the event can be found at THIS LINK.