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02 9 2024

NCI Agency celebrates completion of key communications infrastructure project

On 9 February 2024, the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency) marked the completion of an important project to enable the secure exchange of information across all NATO and national sites.

The contract for the NATO Communication Infrastructure (NCI) System was awarded to Airbus France. The NCI is the backbone of all NATO communications and provides the architecture required to establish secure and encrypted communications points of presence, allowing connectivity of all current and future information and technology infrastructure and services, as well as providing the basis for federated services across the NATO-National Gateway.

NCI Agency celebrates completion of key communications infrastructure project

Through this project, the NCI Agency has delivered 73 points of presence across NATO and the Nations, including three large core sites at the Allied Joint Forces Command Naples in Lago Patria, Italy, the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Mons, Belgium, and NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. The project follows the latest target architecture allowing for more sophisticated data handling, addressing obsolescence of previous systems under an updated platform design.

On 9 February 2024, NCI Agency and Airbus executives and responsible teams celebrated the completion of the project during a symbolic ceremony at the Agency campus in Braine l'Alleud, Belgium.

"I'm proud to recognize the NCI project as a critical component of Digital Transformation and the Digital Backbone, providing the necessary infrastructure to support the digitalization of NATO's operations. The project has not been without its challenges, including the difficult times under COVID-19 conditions. It is only thanks to the hard work, adaptability and dedication of the team that we can mark a closure today," said the NCI Agency General Manager, Ludwig Decamps, during his initial remarks, addressing both NCI Agency and Airbus teams. "It is important to underscore that the scope of the project was defined at a time before the rapid accession of Finland and Sweden to our Alliance seemed realistic. The situation has dramatically changed since then, but the NCI project has adapted and changed to accommodate the installation of nodes in these two countries. As our Alliance continues to evolve, the NCI network will continue to expand to take into account new member nations," he added.

"We are proud to provide NATO with this state-of-the-art secure network that will support the missions and daily operations of the alliance. It provides information flow security and the scalability and adaptability required in these challenging times," said the Head of Sales Secure Communications, Vice President at Airbus Defence and Space, Andreas Reinecke. "The outstanding trustful and solution-driven collaboration between NCIA and Airbus, even during exceptional COVID-times, exemplifies of how complex defence projects can be successful even under difficult circumstances," he added.