NewsNATO strengthens defence ties with greater, smarter armament spending

NATO strengthens defence ties with greater, smarter armament spending

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg
Images source: © Getty Images | Omar Havana
Jacek Losik

10 July 2024 08:38

Outgoing NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that this week, the Alliance countries will sign a joint commitment to greater and smarter expenditure on armaments. In Washington, a three-day North Atlantic Treaty Organization summit is starting.

Jens Stoltenberg stated that the Alliance countries will sign a joint commitment concerning the defence industry this week, promising more lavish and smarter spending on military equipment purchases so that armament manufacturers in NATO countries become "stronger, more innovative and capable of producing at scale."

The declaration, as announced by the Norwegian politician, is to contain three main elements: a commitment to increase spending on armaments, to "spend better by spending more together," and to cooperate with defence industries in Ukraine and the four NATO partner countries: Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand.

The NATO Secretary General emphasised that allies must approach defence spending more wisely, undertaking joint projects and joint procurements, enabling the larger signing of long-term contracts.

Good and bad examples in NATO

As an excellent example of procurement cooperation in NATO, Jens Stoltenberg mentioned, among others, the F-35 fighter programme produced in the United States and eight other Alliance countries.

Stoltenberg also informed that the NATO agency NSPA, responsible for defence procurement, signed contracts for ammunition worth £9 billion last year and for purchasing Stinger anti-aircraft missiles worth £542 million on Tuesday.

The Norwegian also pointed out a bad example. In this context, he mentioned that artillery shells of the essential NATO calibre of 155 mm produced in the Netherlands are incompatible with the 155 mm howitzers produced in Germany.

"It has also demonstrated serious gaps in our interoperability. And this is something we have to take extremely seriously as government and as industry," emphasised Stoltenberg, who will be replaced in October by Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

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