- Political Affairs Division
- Defence Policy and Planning Division
- Defence Budget and Security Investment Section
- NATO Civil Budget, New Headquarters Budget and Civilian Personnel Regulations Section
- Materiel, Information Technology and In-Service Support Section
- Press and Public Affairs Section
- Language Services Section
- Administration Section
- Contact us
Political Affairs Division
The Political Affairs Division advises the Permanent Representative on all matters of foreign and security policy and represents the German Government on policy committees. The main topics here are Alliance policy issues, NATO operations and missions, partnerships with non-NATO countries and responses to the new security challenges.
Within the Political Affairs Division, the Civil Emergency Planning and National Security unit represents Germany’s interests in NATO bodies dealing with protection of the civilian population, civilian enterprises, facilities and institutions vital to life and/or defence (i.e. what is known as “critical infrastructure”), maintenance of state and government functions, and provision of civilian support measures for the armed Forces.
Defence Policy and Planning Division
The Defence Policy and Planning Division advises and supports Germany’s Permanent Representative to NATO in all matters of defence and military policy.
On the NATO committees, the Division represents Germany’s interests by formulating politico-military advice and recommendations for the North Atlantic Council. This includes the future direction of the Alliance’s defence posture, the military capabilities required for the core tasks of collective defence, crisis management and cooperative security, and associated specialist topics like air defence, missile defence and nuclear policy.
Defence Budget and Security Investment Section
The Defence Budget and Security Investment Section represents Germany’s interests in the NATO bodies responsible for the financial resources of the Alliance’s military arm. It provides Germany’s representative on the Resource Policy and Planning Board (RPPB), which is notably responsible for basic issues of the common-funded NATO budgets and programmes and for advising the North Atlantic Council on all financial matters pertaining to the military sphere at NATO. This includes recommending caps for the annual budget and drawing up Medium-Term Resource Plans for the subsequent four years.
The section also provides Germany’s representative on the Budget Committee (BC), where the NATO military budgets are prepared for adoption and implementation and subjected to scrutiny. The military budget, which is currently worth around 1.4 billion euros, funds the operating costs of NATO headquarters, agencies and other institutions as well as NATO missions. Finally, this section also attends the NATO Investment Committee (IC). The IC is responsible for the planning and implementation of the NATO Security Investment Programme (NSIP), for which NATO allies are currently providing around 700 million euros. In NATO member countries, the NSIP is used to make investments (in IT projects as well as building work) which are necessary and eligible for common funding under NATO regulations.
Germany contributes approximately 15% of the military budget and of the NSIP.
NATO Civil Budget, New Headquarters Budget and Civilian Personnel Regulations Section
The NATO Civil Budget, New Headquarters Budget and Civilian Personnel Regulations Section advises the Permanent Representative on all the areas within its purview and represents Germany on the Civil Budget Committee. The civil budget, 14.7% of which is provided by Germany, comprises the funds available to the Secretary General for political affairs, which amount to 252 million euros in 2019. It is used to finance all civilian activities at NATO HQ, staff and pension costs (approx. 60% of the budget), the operation of the new HQ and that of the old HQ until it is handed back to Belgium, investment, programmes, partnership activities, civilian contributions to operations and missions, etc.
This section is also responsible for the funding and financial oversight of the construction of the new NATO headquarters. NATO moved into the new building in 2018, but a number of funding and follow-up issues are still being dealt with. (Further information on the new HQ is available on the NATO website.)
It provides Germany’s representative on the Resource Policy and Planning Board (RPPB) for fundamental matters of financial and budgetary policy, including the business of IBAN, the International Board of Auditors for NATO (which ensures that financial transactions are conducted properly and in accordance with NATO’s Financial Regulations).
And finally, this section’s remit also includes all aspects of NATO service regulations and staffing policy.
Materiel, Information Technology and In-Service Support Section
This section advises the Permanent Representative and represents the German Government in matters of materiel, IT and in-service support.
This section advises the Permanent Representative and represents the German Government in matters of materiel, IT and in-service support in the Conference of National Armaments Directors (CNAD) and on the Consultation, Command and Control Board (C3B). The primary role of the CNAD and the C3B is to advance IT and materiel-related cooperation among the NATO member countries and, in some areas, with partner countries.
Areas of work include, inter alia, multinational and NATO-funded cooperation projects such as Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS), Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (JISR) and missile defesnce as well as the implementation of NATO initiatives like Smart Defence , the Connected Forces Initiative (CFI) and the Framework Nations Concept.
In addition, this section serves as a main point of contact for the German military technology industry and its associations.
Press and Public Affairs Section
The Press and Public Affairs Section deals with all the public diplomacy work of Germany’s NATO delegation, organises press events with the German Foreign and Defence Ministers, and represents Germany in the relevant NATO bodies. The section works in close cooperation with NATO’s Public Diplomacy Division. Our spokeswoman, Nadine Skale, is the first point of contact for correspondents accredited in Brussels for the German and international media. The team uses the delegation’s Twitter account to provide day-to-day updates on Germany’s role within NATO. It also looks after groups visiting NATO headquarters.
Language Services Section
The Language Services Section provides the Permanent Delegation with a wide range of language support. Documents and instructions for the Delegation’s day-to-day work are translated into one or other of NATO’s official languages, English and French. When summits and ministerial meetings are held, the Language Services Section produces the official German version of the final communiqués. It also helps with all kinds of terminological questions and serves as a point of contact with the NATO interpreters and translators.
The Administration Section creates the conditions necessary for the Permanent Delegation to function. Its work is very diverse, ranging from staffing and organisational matters to administration of the premises, office equipment, the motor pool and office security.