The Russian invasion of Ukraine has challenged most of the premises underpinning the European security order. Among these is the idea that high-intensity conventional wars are rare and mostly short affairs. After more than one year marked by the devastations ravaging Ukraine, this assumption is clearly no longer valid. At the same time, the European productive capacity cannot keep pace with the return of a large-scale war on the Old Continent. The ability to produce enough advanced weapon systems is highly limited by technical, political and administrative factors. The lack of economically sustainable industrial plans to respond to prolonged regional wars will hamper attempts to dissuade rivals such as Russia from carrying out aggressive policies in the European neighbourhood. This study presents an overview of the current state of the defence industry in the Euro-Atlantic area, with a particular focus on the European continent. It will analyse the challenges presented by the current shortage of military stocks as well as by capability gaps unrelated to the conflict. The study also provides an overview of the current defence market structure and presents some of the measures adopted by France, Germany and the European Union to facilitate production surges and improve the level of preparation of the respective armed forces.
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