In the period from 07 to 09 June 2022, the annual meeting of the heads of the language institutes as well as the language responsible bodies in the ministries of defense of the member states of the Central European Defense Cooperation took place at the National Defense Academy.
The Language Competence Platform, which was founded by the CEDC member states Croatia, Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Hungary in March 2019, is a decision-making forum that aims to facilitate a common regional language policy. It also leads to an improvement as well as deepening of multilateral cooperation through concrete planning and goal setting in the field of language. Through appropriate coordination in key areas such as language education, language testing, terminology work, and translation, optimal use of language resources is made at both bilateral and multilateral levels.
For example, the COOPSEC 2019 exercise in Hungary was already supported in September 2019 with a language staff unit formed by the Competence Platform. In addition, glossaries on “Cross-Border Disaster Relief” and “Border Management” were developed together with all member states in all CEDC languages and used on an operational basis.
In the last two years, due to COVID-19, the annual conference could only be held virtually. This made the new launch of the platform in Vienna at the National Defense Academy all the more important. Under the leadership of the Language Institute of the Austrian Armed Forces, representatives from Croatia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Hungary participated in this conference in a present way, while the representatives from Slovakia were represented online.
The annual meeting began with presentations from the 6 member states on current developments in the language field. This was followed by reports from the Working Groups on language testing and terminology work. Intensive and forward-looking discussions were then held to determine the plans for the next two years in the cooperation areas of language training, language testing, terminology work and interpreting and translation activities.
The next joint event of the Language Competence Platform will be a terminology workshop to be held in Vienna in October, as well as an online testers seminar hosted by the Czech Republic in the second half of 2022. In addition, it is planned to jointly train and certify testers by the end of 2022. The Austrian Presidency of the CEDC Language Platform will be concluded with the signing of a framework paper on the Language Competence Platform by the CEDC Ministers of Defense in December 2022.