Secretary General welcomes unprecedented rise in NATO defence spending

  • 14 Feb. 2024 -
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  • Last updated: 15 Feb. 2024 11:35

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg released NATO's latest defence spending figures on Wednesday (14 February 2024), which show an unprecedented increase across European Allies and Canada.

Defence expenditure as percentage of GDP - NATO total and NATO Europe

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Previewing this week's meetings of Defence Ministers, Mr Stoltenberg announced that since the Defence Investment Pledge was made in 2014, European Allies and Canada have added more than $600 billion for defence. In 2023, we saw a real increase of 11% in defence spending across European Allies and Canada, which the Secretary General called an “unprecedented rise”. He added that he expects 18 Allies to spend 2% of GDP on defence in 2024 – a six-fold increase since 2014, when only three Allies met the target.

“In 2024, NATO Allies in Europe will invest a combined total of 380 billion US dollars in defence. For the first time, this amounts to 2% of their combined GDP," said Mr Stoltenberg. He added: “we are making real progress: European Allies are spending more. However, some Allies still have a ways to go. Because we agreed at the Vilnius Summit that all Allies should invest 2%, and that 2% is a minimum.”

In 2014, NATO Allies in Europe invested 1.47% of their collective GDP in defence. That figure has risen steadily over a decade, and will reach 2% in 2024.