On 15 March 2019, the North Atlantic Council welcomed Colombia’s International Demining Centre (CIDES) into the network of NATO Partnership Training and Education Centres (PTEC). Since 1999, PTECs have played an essential role in supporting NATO, notably by offering multiple courses and training to Allies and partners. To date, 34 Centres (including CIDES), based in 25 NATO and partner countries, have joined the NATO network. More Centres have expressed their interest in joining the community.
As NATO focuses on helping partners to develop viable, efficient and resilient defence institutions, the PTEC community is heavily engaged in adding sustainable and concrete value. In 2018, PTECs trained close to 50,000 personnel and conducted around 1,300 courses – with 715 provided to NATO Allies and partners. In addition, the PTEC community put together around 200 Mobile Training Teams. A substantial number of collaborative research projects were conducted by PTECs, frequently in cooperation with other institutes. As part of the PTEC community, CIDES will contribute to the education and training of personnel from NATO nations and partners in the crucial area of humanitarian and military demining. The decision for CIDES to join the PTEC network was made in the context of the NATO-Colombia Individual Partnership and Cooperation Programme. Agreed in May 2017, this Programme paved the way for increased cooperation between NATO and Colombia, identifying humanitarian and operational demining as an area where Colombia’s unique expertise could support NATO Allies and partners.