Finland has been NATO’s Enhanced Opportunities Partner (EOP) since 2014. On Thursday 16 November, NATO decided to continue the EOP cooperation with Finland and four other partners for the next three years.
NATO launched the EOP at the 2014 Wales Summit and invited five partners, namely Finland, Sweden, Georgia, Jordan and Australia, to join the tailor-made programme of cooperation. The North Atlantic Council decides the enhanced opportunities partners for three years at the time. Yesterday, the cooperation was continued with all the five countries.
The aim of the EOP is to deepen the dialogue and practical cooperation between the five partners and NATO. For Finland, the EOP has been a useful instrument in maintaining and developing its NATO partnership. It has granted Finland an access to planning of exercises already in an earlier phase. Furthermore, it has advanced the regular, political dialogue including at the ministerial level.
Enhanced Opportunities Partners are not a fixed group or format, but partners, whose contributions to NATO missions and operations as well as force pools and capabilities are more advanced. Hence, NATO has granted them a more tailor-made relationship in areas of mutual interest for NATO and the partner concerned.