“This year will be the sixth consecutive year of increase in military spending by European allies and Canada, a real increase of 4.3%. We expect this trend to continue, “Stoltenberg told a news conference a day before a videoconference meeting of NATO defense ministers.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization released defense spending data from NATO member states on Wednesday.
According to these data, which are just estimates for 2019 and 2020, the United States needs to make a big budget effort, through spending that represents 3.87% of US GDP.
NATO member states, led by Germany, are under pressure from US President Donald Trump, who is calling for more efforts to reach a spending target of 2% of GDP.
Of the 30 Member States, ten exceed this threshold by 2020 – including Greece (2.58%), the United Kingdom (2.43%), Poland (2.30%) and France (2.11%).
Last year, only three states were in this situation, namely the United States, Greece and the United Kingdom.
Germany remains below this threshold – at 1.57% of GDP – but also Canada (1.45%).
NATO Defense Ministers meet on Thursday and Friday by video conference.
Among the topics addressed is the “right distribution of the military burden,” Stoltenberg said.