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Address by State Secretary Macedonian MoD

Mr. Dragan Nikolic

StratCom and Public Diplomacy Course at PARC
14 February 2018 at 09.30

Dear participants at PARC’s StratCom and Public Diplomacy Course,

Respected Mr.Laity,
Dear friends,

It is indeed my pleasure to join you here today at PARC.

I have to admit that during my tenure as State Secretary of the Macedonian Ministry
of Defence, I always had a very special place for PARC.

I am in fact honored to be here today with you, because PARC is the shining star in
our defence portfolio, and it provides an important and unique contribution to
nations and NATO, and that makes us very proud.

As you probably know, from today’s 31 PTECs around the world, PARC is the single
PTEC, accredited by NATO, which is specialized in Public Affairs.

PARC is the Public Affairs hub in Europe, where NATO, partner countries and global
partners can meet, communicate, learn, network and succeed.

So, why is PARC important? Well, Public Affairs are rapidly gaining importance and
PARC meets NATO’s priorities.

Building resilience was underlined as instrumental at the NATO Summit in Warsaw.

Furthermore, enhancing resilience in Western Balkans was underlined as a way for
projecting stability beyond NATO’s borders.
I want to stress that capacity building in Public Affairs is instrumental for enhancing
resilience, especially when addressing hybrid security threats, such as
disinformation and propaganda.

PARC is also one of the very few centers, where along with theoretical knowledge
you can actually get the practical, “hands-on” PA training. This is essential for your
future work as Public Affairs Officers but also beneficial for any other assignment
that you might take in future.

PARC prepares you to effectively engage in Public Affairs in peace-time, in crisis

situations and when deployed in operations.

PARC attracts eminent speakers and Subject Matter Experts from NATO, SHAPE and
Allied countries that add value to each of PARC’s courses. Actually, with their
support PARC makes step forward in developing new modules and courses such as
the StratCom and Public Diplomacy Course that starts today. With this regards, it is
my great pleasure that we have Mr.Mark Laity, Chief Strategic Communications at
SHAPE as an honor guest speaker in PARC today. Thank you indeed Mr.Laity for
supporting PARC and this pilot course!

And last but not least, PARC has a huge added value - it gathers participants from all
NATO and partner countries, but also participants from a wide spectrum of state
institutions and governmental agencies (military and civilian, not only from Defence
Ministries, but also from Missions/Delegations to NATO, Ministries of Foreign
Affairs, Ministries of Interior, Cabinets of President, Prime Minister, Crisis
Management Directorates, Search & Rescue Agencies, etc).

I would like to therefore stress that PARC is the place where you can double benefit
– acquire Public Affairs skills and at the same time become part of a unique network
of contacts and friendships – from NATO, partners and partners across the globe.
I therefore encourage you to take full advantage of what PARC has to offer, during
this StratCom and Public Diplomacy Course.

At the end I would like to wish you all a great learning and training experience here
at PARC but also a very productive study trip in NATO and EU HQs in Brussels!

Thank you!