NATO Must Raise Defense Spending, UK Secy Says

The Defense Secretary will call on NATO to step up its vigilance and demand that all member states provide at least 2.5% of their GDP to their military budgets.

Given the current state of affairs, NATO countries are anticipated to devote a meager 2.0% of their GDP to defense, a sum that may not be enough in these uncertain times.

At today’s London Defence Conference, Grant Shapps will stress that the alliance should adopt this level of funding as its new baseline.

Additionally, Mr. Shapps will lobby for potential NATO membership from European nations that are not currently members but would be protected by the alliance.

This requirement was only met by eleven of the thirty-two nations that made up the alliance last year. But by year’s end, experts predict that figure will have risen to 18.

Defense currently receives just around 2.5% of GDP from eight states. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said that this expenditure is anticipated to be reached by 2030.

The 75th-anniversary meeting of NATO in July in Washington D.C. has the potential to adopt the 2.5 percent baseline.

Going to Washington, Shapps intends to push for a 2.5% rate, saying everyone who stands to gain from NATO’s protection should be a full member. Echoing the maligned President Trump, Shapps said despite the benefits of NATO security, several European nations continue to enjoy independence and democracy without contributing to the continent’s collective defense.

When Europe’s safety is at risk, being neutral is not an option.

Despite having taken a neutral position before Russia invaded Ukraine, the two neutral countries of Finland and Sweden have now declared their intention to join NATO.

After changing their stances, just four European states—Ireland, Malta, and Austria—remain neutral.

Under international law, governments that claim to be neutral must refrain from participating in armed hostilities and must also refrain from showing favoritism or support for any side of the conflict.

Irish parliamentarians have maintained their long-standing neutrality stance, notwithstanding the crisis in Ukraine.