European NATO allies increased military spending in 2018, with big increases in the Baltics, Poland and the Netherlands. Overall European spending is up an hit a five-year high of 1.51 percent of GDP. Britain, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland met the 2 percent goal, according to the NATO 2018 annual report. Bulgaria, the Baltics and the Netherlands added an extra 20 percent in 2018 compared to 2017. NATO’s European member states increased their defence budgets by 4.2% in real-terms in 2018. Their combined total spending would be US$264 billion. In 2020, the combined NATO Europe military spending will be about $270-290 billion.
Europe’s largest economy, Germany, invested an additional €1.5 billion ($1.7 billion) in defense last year, raising the figure to almost €42 billion ($47 billion) and keeping its rate as a percentage of GDP stable at 1.23 percent.
That leaves Germany at the lower end of the spectrum, with the US at 3.39 percent, while Belgium and Spain remain below 1 percent of economic output. Spending in Canada fell by almost 11 percent last year.
In 2019 Russia’s total defense expenditure (which includes the secret services as well as the military) will be about 4.8-5 trillion rubles. Three trillion rubles is allocated to the military, and approximately two trillion more will be spent on the police and secret services. This would be about US$46 billion for Russia’s military. Russia is decreasing its military procurement and is failing to meet military modernization goals.
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