NATO reports rising defence spending in Europe

  • Liis Einstein
  • 15.3.2017 08:30

NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced on 13 March in his annual report that defence spending among European NATO members is rising for the first time in seven years. In 2016, 23 Allies increased their defence expenditure on average by 3.8 %.

NATO’s Allies spent 2.43 % on defence in 2016 compared with 2.40 % in 2015. Five European NATO members - Estonia, Greece, Poland and United Kingdom exceeded the 2 % guideline of GDP. According to Stoltenberg all Allies should reach the 2% goal and have fair burden-sharing within Alliance. New United States President Donald Trump has also insisted the European Allies to increase defence spending. Romania plans to reach 2% in 2017 and both Latvia and Lithuania expect to do the same in 2018. Germany has expressed concerns about reaching the 2% in the near future. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker called on EU Member States to resist defence spending as they are contributing to development and humanitarian aid.  

About author: Liis Einstein

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