- Germany must increase its military spending by 100 billion euros.
- The agreement came as a result of a constitutional amendment.
- Germany greatly reduced the size of its military since the end of the Cold War.
The German government and conservative opposition have agreed on a deal that will release € 100 billion ($ 107 billion) to modernize the army in light of the Russian threat.
An agreement was reached late on Sunday to set up a special fund for military procurement that will also allow Berlin to achieve NATO’s goal of spending two percent of GDP on defense.
The agreement, which involves amending the budgetary rules of the national constitution, was concluded after weeks of difficult negotiations between the governing coalition parties and the Conservatives of former Chancellor Angela Merkel, representatives of these groups told AFP.
Three days after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February, Chancellor Olaf Scholz promised a special budget of 100 billion euros to refurbish the German military and modernize its obsolete equipment over the next few years.
But critics have since accused Scholz of cowardice in his support for Kiev and of not taking adequate concrete action on arms supplies.
The agreement will allow Berlin to achieve NATO’s target of spending 2% of GDP on defense “on average over several years”, according to the text of the agreement, which AFP has received.
The extraordinary fund will be financed by additional debt.
For that, it was necessary to circumvent the rule of the “debt brake”, which is enshrined in the Constitution, which limits the borrowing of the state.
That was why the government needed the support of the Conservative opposition to muster the two-thirds majority in parliament needed to pass the constitutional amendment.
- The 100 billion euros will be paid into a special fund outside the national budget.
- The release of the funds to the military is a major upheaval for Germany, which in recent years has dragged its feet for a long time to meet its NATO spending commitments, which has drawn criticism from Washington in particular.
- Since the end of the Cold War, Germany has significantly reduced the size of its army, from about 500,000 in 1990 to just 200,000 today.
- Fewer than 30% of German naval vessels were “fully operational”, according to a report released in December on the state of the military.
- Many of the country’s fighter jets are unsuitable for flying.
But the invasion of Ukraine has brought a country permeated by pacifism into action since the horrors of the Nazi era.
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Germany increases the military by 100 billion. EUR to modernize in the light of the threat posed by Russia
Source link Germany increases the military by 100 billion. EUR to modernize in the light of the threat posed by Russia