Canada to Increase Military Spending by 70% over the Next Decade
Canada’s defence minister Harjit Sajjan announced recently that the country’s military spending is expected to increase by 70% in the next 10 years. The country currently spends around 1.2% of the total GDP on military services. This is projected to increase to 1.4-1.5% over 2026-2027. The North American country aims to increase spending to US$ 24 billion over the following decade.
The U.S. currently accounts for around 70% of the total military spending of NATO. As a result, Canada’s decision of significantly increasing its military spending policy was comforting for the US defence secretary, James Mattis. He backed Canada’s decision by saying that Canada’s moral voice should be supported by a strong military force and the decision was the right thing to do in such times.
The decision was welcomed by several Canadian politicians who affirmed their support with positive statements about this decision. Chrystia Freeland, Canada’s Foreign Minister stated that it was no longer advisable to rely on Washington for global leadership and hence increasing military spending was a good idea. Marc Garneau, the Transport Minister backed it too, saying that it was a sovereign decision.
Speaking of Canada’s bold move, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said that if Canada expects to remain a respected country amongst the others in the world, then it needs to take its role severely, and to take its role severely, decisions about funding the military would have be taken seriously.
Canada has contributed around 800 military personnel on the anti-Islamic State Group mission. However, the fighter jets were removed after the election of Justin Trudeau in 2015. It also has around 220 troops in Ukraine and 200 in Poland.
NATO General Secretary Jens Stolenberg said, “I warmly welcome Canada’s new defence policy and the major planned investments. This new policy affirms Canada’s unwavering commitment to NATO and will ensure Canada has the armed forces and key capabilities that the Alliance needs.”
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