European NATO Members Owe €56 Billion In Defense Debt

European countries need to contribute extra €56 billion to NATO’s defense budget to reach the target of 2% of GDP, according to a research done for the alliance by the German institution Ifo, as reported by the Financial Times.

Germany was the largest debtor at the end of last year, according to Ifo, having contributed €14 billion less to NATO defense than was necessary to meet the aim. With €11 billion in debt, Spain was ranked second by the institute, followed by Italy with €10.8 billion and Belgium with €4.6 billion.

« Last year, two-thirds of NATO’s total defense spending of €1.2 trillion went to the United States, more than double the €361 billion spent by EU members, the UK and Norway combined, » writes the magazine.

« Countries with high debt levels and high interest costs do not have much room to increase debt payments, so the only realistic way to do this is to cut spending in other areas, » Ifo notes.


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