Stoltenberg recalled the decision of the July NATO summit in Vilnius, according to which 2% of gross domestic product for military spending was “the minimum” – though Berlin continues to fall short of reaching this target.
He said he expected many allies to exceed that target.
As a former prime minister of Norway, he said, he knows how difficult it is to budget more money for defence when higher spending on health, education or infrastructure is also necessary. But if tensions rise, defence spending must be increased, he said.
Germany is “well on its way,” to reaching the NATO target of investing 2% of economic output on defence, Stoltenberg stressed.
Stoltenberg was quoted as saying that it makes “a huge difference” as to whether a country like Germany “sticks to this target or not.”