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Germany approves further increase in defence spending

The German government on 24 March approved the benchmarks for the federal budget, including the defence budget and funding plan until 2025, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on its website the same day. This includes a 2022 defence budget totalling EUR49.29 billion (USD58 billion), a 5% increase from this year's EUR46.93 billion.

German Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karenbauer said the increase is necessary to fill capability gaps and counter threats from unmanned aerial vehicles and hypersonic weapons, as well as in cyberspace, resulting from decades of cuts.

With this decision, the federal government accepts its international obligations to NATO and the EU, the German MoD said, adding that it was agreed to fund major projects and citing as examples German armaments co-operation with France and Norway, and the replacement of the Tornado combat aircraft. For example, the ministry reported on its website on 24 March that the budget committee of the Bundestag, the German parliament, is on the verge of approving funding for the development of the European Medium-Altitude, Long-Endurance (MALE) Remotely Piloted Air System (RPAS), paving the way for the contract signing by Germany, France, Italy, and Spain by the middle of the year.

However, Germany's financial planning for 2023–25 projects a decline in defence spending, which Kramp-Karrenbauer does not consider sufficient to modernise the Bundeswehr, commensurate to the threat, nor to meet Berlin's international commitments. She described Germany's commitment to spend 2% of GDP as in our own interest to make a fair contribution to our security in Germany and Europe.

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