Some have expressed worries that the UK will not be free to run its own defence policy once out of the EU fully owing to alleged commitments to a Common European Defence and Security Policy.
The Agreements entered in to make clear this is not the case. The UK has the option to participate in CSDP missions on a case by case basis, but only if the EU offers and the UK agrees. The Agreement is express is saying “without prejudice to decision making autonomy of the UK or of the sovereignty of the UK”. “The UK will maintain the right to determine how it would respond to any invitation or option to participate in operations or missions”
It will also be important to reinforce these freedoms that the UK organises its defence procurement in a way which allows it freedom to pursue its own policy. There is no binding requirement to go for European weapons systems and supplies. Each procurement can be arranged in a way which protects UK independence. It is important that the UK controls the necessary technologies and intellectual property and has potential capacity to make the weapons it might need.